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Increased competition within the financial services industry has raised concerns about the ability of rural banks to adequately fund local development. In an attempt to address these concerns, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999 broadened rural bank access to Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) financing. Rural banks that are experiencing higher interest rate risk, tighter net interest margins, and liquidity constraints seek FHLB membership and actively use advances to increase lending. Greater reliance on nondeposit funding may increase the risk profiles of banks.


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