Nation in 'unusual' economic times, bank officials say

Friday, November 1, 2002

Cape Girardeau area businessmen and women received a glimpse of the country's economic future through the eyes of Commerce Bank officials during a luncheon meeting Thursday at Drury Lodge.

The meeting was hosted by David Kemper, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Commerce Bancshares Inc., and Roger Tolliver of Jackson, president of Commerce Community Bank.

Kemper and Scott M. Colbert, senior vice president of the Commerce Trust Company, spoke about the current and future economic circumstances and the effect those circumstances may have on Commerce customers.

"We're in a precarious and unusual time," said Kemper. "Kind of a hangover from the extraordinary circumstances of the past decade.

"Things have been very slow. We think it's going to be a very tough economic environment next year," Kemper said.

Colbert, who also serves as the director of fixed income, talked about the bank's expectations and predictions for the future and the problems now facing the economy.

"The biggest worry facing the economy is employment," Colbert said.

Colbert said that year-to-date employment growth has been essentially nonexistent.

And despite low interest rates, the like of which hasn't been seen in more than 40 years, Colbert said the demand for money has faded.

"The economy has been growing, and we expect it to continue to grow," Colbert said. "But that growth has been very anemic."

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: