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ICBA Encourages Americans to Save during America Saves Week Feb. 24 – March 2

Washington, D.C. (Feb. 21, 2008)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) adds its voice to more than 1,000 organizations nationwide to encourage Americans to save as part of America Saves Week celebrated Feb. 23 - March 2.

"It's never too early or too late to develop good savings habits," said James P. Ghiglieri, Jr., ICBA chairman and president of Alpha Financial Group, Toluca, Ill. "The best advice I can give is to start saving now during America Saves Week. Even small and regular savings can build up quickly thanks to compounding. Savings is a major part of any individual or family financial plan."

Community banks offer important savings products and services to help fulfill financial goals. One of the major advantages of saving at a community bank is that because they are local they put a premium on providing superior customer service in order to build a lasting financial relationship with their customers. A house down payment, retirement, college, adoption expenses, vacation, emergency funds - to name a few - are all goals families and individuals may have that require savings and great reasons to start a saving nest egg now.

The most common savings vehicles include savings accounts, money market accounts, money market funds and certificates of deposit (CDs). Many employers offer automatic payroll deduction, one of the best ways to start and keep saving. "The important thing is to get started," said Ghiglieri.

The most important factors in choosing where to place your savings are:

  • Access. How quickly can you access your money? Community banks are local and offer an array of technology so that consumers have access to their money when and where they need it.
  • Safety. How safe is your money? At a community bank, each depositor is insured to at least $100,000 by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
  • Earnings. How much money will you earn? Community banks offer competitive products and interest rates.

America Saves Week is a nationwide campaign in which a broad coalition of nonprofit, corporate, and government organizations help individuals and families save and build wealth. Through information, advice, and encouragement, America Saves assists those who wish to pay down debt, build an emergency fund, save for a home, save for an education, or save for retirement. Learn more about financial literacy and how to get started on building a nest egg at: www.icba.org and http://www.americasaves.org.