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Interest in marine loans seen at banking conference

National Marine Bankers Association officials who recently took part in the Consumer Bankers Association's "CBA Live" annual lending conference in Fort Lauderdale said many who attended were interested in learning more about lending to the marine industry.

Attending the conference were NMBA president Karen Trostle of Sterling Acceptance; Jim Foley of Trident Funding; and immediate past president Jim Coburn of Coburn & Associates.

During the three-day meeting, they used an exhibit booth and networked with a number of the 800 who attended to provide details on the NMBA's annual conference, marine lending workshop and provide the updated market overview, "A Fresh Look at Marine Lending."

Trostle said 70 brochures were distributed and a number of contacts were made to provide additional information.

The general view of lenders at the conference reflected what many of their bank economists have been projecting. They expect a slight uptick in loan demand during the next year (59 percent expect it to increase in the next 12 months), but believe that growth will be tempered by the overall economy (seen as "weak and wobbly" during the next two years).

"We talked to lenders not currently serving the market with an interest in learning more about the composition of boat loan portfolios. They assumed their portfolio would reflect the type of boating in their market area, but needed a basic understanding of lien perfection and were curious about borrower profiles," Trostle said in a statement.

"Others who were current or former boat lenders were more focused on the state of the boating industry and collateral values," she added. "We explained that we had resources and data available to both groups that could assist in learning the boat lending routine or to benchmark performance."

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