WED AM News: Inflation causing bank deposits to slow; Molson Coors, Urban League launching new entrepreneurship program

— The head of the Wisconsin Bankers Association says inflation is causing deposits to slow. 

In a recent interview, WBA President and CEO Rose Oswald Poels explained deposit levels were “extremely high” during the COVID-19 pandemic due to various factors. 

Some customers simply wanted their money in a safe place, while others were getting pandemic-related federal funds for both individuals and businesses, she said yesterday. 

“So as we have seen last year, energy prices going up, interest rates going up, inflation going up as a result of all of that, we have noticed that our deposits are starting to flow out of the bank,” she told “In some cases, it is to maybe chase a higher interest rate somewhere else, but in other cases it really is to pay for everyday needs that consumers and businesses have.” 

She referenced the latest federal figures covering the third quarter of 2022, which show total deposits at Wisconsin banks grew just 1.45 percent from the prior quarter, and 3.83 percent year-over-year. 

“We’re all paying a little bit more for food, for gas, to heat our homes during this winter — all of that is costing more, so it’s taking a little bit out of people’s savings and they’re needing to spend that as a result,” she said. “We saw the pace of deposits really slow at Wisconsin banks compared to last year, when you look just quarter-over-quarter, they’ve really slowed down compared to what we have been used to.” 

Meanwhile, lending rates at Wisconsin banks have been on the rise across various loan categories. 

In a recent forecast included in WBA’s latest Wisconsin Economic Report, Oswald Poels noted residential loan demand has “continued to grow at a steady pace” despite higher interest rates due to home prices falling. 

“Commercial lending saw ongoing strong demand year over year with an increase of 10.04%, although the third quarter grew at a slower pace of 2.25% from the prior quarter, signaling business owners’ concerns around inflation, a potential recession, and uncertainty heading into the midterm elections,” she wrote. 

See the full sector forecast here: 

— Molson Coors and the Greater Milwaukee Urban League are launching a new entrepreneurship program for Black startup founders. 

The beverage maker and Milwaukee-based nonprofit group yesterday announced plans to create the GMUL Entrepreneurship Connection, which will offer business resources and networking events for those taking part. 

Participants will also get access to the Black Entrepreneur Initiative program, providing resources to help emerging business leaders grow their companies and access capital. This program, launched by the nonprofit group The Lonely Entrepreneur, has previously partnered with Molson Coors to support diverse early-stage companies. 

Michael Nordman, senior manager of community affairs for Molson Coors, says the new program will “empower Milwaukee’s diverse entrepreneurs” and small business community. 

“Molson Coors is committed to championing diversity and closing the racial wealth gap across our hometown communities,” Nordman said in the release. 

See the release: 

— DATCP says it will be awarding up to $200,000 in Buy Local, Buy Wisconsin grant funding this year. 

The BLBW program aims to improve locally grown food production in Wisconsin by supporting businesses, organizations or individuals involved in agriculture, food processing, distribution, retail, agricultural tourism and more. 

Applicants can request grants of between $5,000 and $50,000, with funding available for up to three years, according to a DATCP release. These dollars can go toward compensation, consultations, materials and supplies. 

Project organizers must show they can secure a one-to-one match of cash or other support that covers at least half of the total budget, the agency says. They’ll also be required to report on project impacts, including sales, jobs and new investments. 

The agency will be accepting applications through the end of March. Those selected can begin in June. 

Since launching in 2008, this program has funded 102 projects totaling more than $2.6 million. DATCP says previous recipients have collectively generated more than $13.76 million in new local food sales while creating and retaining around 400 jobs. 

See more details and find application information here: 

— All seven Wisconsin Republicans in Congress have sent a letter to UW System President Jay Rothman urging him to ban TikTok from system devices and its Wi-Fi.

The letter comes after Dem Gov. Tony Evers banned TikTok from state devices earlier this month. The feds also have banned the app from federal devices.

Evers’ ban did not cover the UW System. But university officials told when it was signed the system was working on a policy to restrict use of the app on UW-owned devices.

Signed by Wisconsin’s six House Republicans and U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Oshkosh, the letter urges Rothman to ban the app from system devices and its use on the system’s wired and wireless networks.

“Given well-documented attempts by CCP-affiliated entities to influence American universities, it is especially important that we minimize the reach of TikTok on our campuses,” the letter reads.

UW System spokesperson Mark Pitsch told the university system “will be restricting the TikTok application on System-owned devices.”

See the letter:

<br><b><i>Top headlines from the Health Care Report …</b></i> 

— U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin is reintroducing a bill to make permanent enhanced tax credits for the Affordable Care Act marketplace, the Madison Dem announced. 

And Marquette University’s Dental School revitalization plan is getting a boost from a $1 million donation from the We Energies Foundation. 

<i>For more of the most relevant news on COVID-19, reports on groundbreaking health research in Wisconsin, links to top stories and more, sign up today for the free daily Health Care Report from and</i> 

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