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Applied Bank tops list of ‘healthiest’ U.S. banks

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WILMINGTON – Applied Bank recently finished first overall in the annual DepositAccounts.com ranking of the Healthiest Banks in America.

Applied Bank, headquartered off U.S. Route 202 at the Wells Fargo Tower, formerly known as the Rollins Building and Applied Bank Center, bested more than 4,000 banks analyzed across the U.S. by the subsidiary of leading online loan aggregator LendingTree.

The annual list examines a variety of factors to determine a bank’s ability to weather another financial downturn like that seen in 2008-09. Among those factors are the Texas ratio, an indicator of how much capital a bank has available compared to the total value of loans considered at risk; its deposit growth, an indicator of consumer confidence and the bank’s ability to strengthen its balance sheet; and capitalization level, which allows for a buffer to cover loans that may fail.

Applied Bank scored in the A+ range for all three factors, with a Texas ratio of 0%, a 27% increase in deposits year-over-year, and a capitalization level of more than 21%. About one third of all banks reviewed by DepositAccounts.com scored in the A+ range, according to the rankings.

“We are very proud to have Applied Bank recognized as the No. 1 rated bank in America for financial health,” said Rocco Abessinio, chairman and CEO of Applied Bank, in a statement announcing the rankings. “These ratings demonstrate Applied Bank’s commitment to excellence that enables us to provide top-rated banking services, including one of the top Asset Protection programs, to customers all across the U.S.”

Delaware ranked 24th in terms of share of healthiest banks serving customers, with other leading state financial institutions like WSFS Bank (A+), PNC Bank (A), M&T Bank (A), TD Bank (A+), Chase Bank (A) and Artisans’ Bank (A) also scoring well. In its rankings of credit unions, Seaford-based Tidemark Federal Credit Union ranked 134th overall. It was the only other Delaware-based institution to make one of the top 200 lists.

Applied Bank is much smaller than most of its in-state competitors, with nearly $202 million in assets on hand compared to billions for most of the others. It also has a limited brick-and-mortar presence with just two branches, one at its Wilmington-area headquarters and one in Rehoboth Beach.

Founded in 1996 with a focus on credit cards for high-risk customers, it’s since found success in commercial lending in recent years, especially in the financing of construction projects. It also worked to support new clients applying for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) last year.

DepositAccounts.com evaluates the financial health of every federally insured bank and credit union in the United States once per quarter and updates its rankings annually. It notes the importance of banking with a “healthy” institution, as well-capitalized and balanced banks can typically provided better services, lower interest rates and higher yields.

“We believe it is important to give consumers a way to evaluate the financial health of their institutions,” said Ken Tumin, founder of DepositAccounts.com, said in a statement. “Our list empowers consumers to make informed decisions when selecting a financial institution.”

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