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Howard Bancorp to acquire 1st Mariner Bank

“The big banks certainly play a role in the financing of businesses, but community banks are especially important for local businesses,” said Bert Ely, a Virginia banking consultant. “It will be able to serve not just the smallest businesses but those that are not quite so small.”

Many small businesses prefer a smaller, local bank to larger regional and national institutions, said Anita Newcomb, president and managing director of AG Newcomb & Co., a Columbia-based strategic consulting firm for the banking industry. Smaller banks offer businesses a personal relationship with their bankers and easy access to top decision makers, she said.

“They also want to feel that they have a partner who’s going to be with them through the good times and the bad,” Newcomb said.

Some national and regional banks reduced lending and even backed out of local markets during the most recent recession, but local banks remained, she said.

“The community banks, this is their livelihood,” Newcomb said.

US Bancorp (USB) Position Lowered by Mariner Wealth Advisors LLC

Mariner Wealth Advisors LLC cut its position in shares of U.S. Bancorp (NYSE:USB) by 12.6% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 26,152 shares of the financial services provider’s stock after selling 3,765 shares during the period. Mariner Wealth Advisors LLC’s holdings in U.S. Bancorp were worth $1,358,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. New England Asset Management Inc. lifted its holdings in U.S. Bancorp by 52.5% during the 1st quarter. New England Asset Management Inc. now owns 26,571,846 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,368,451,000 after buying an additional 9,150,126 shares in the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. lifted its holdings in U.S. Bancorp by 154.2% during the 2nd quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 5,836,557 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $303,034,000 after buying an additional 3,540,530 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its holdings in U.S. Bancorp by 1.7% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 105,568,014 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $5,481,092,000 after buying an additional 1,727,498 shares in the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in U.S. Bancorp by 54.2% during the 1st quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 4,698,271 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $241,961,000 after buying an additional 1,652,219 shares in the last quarter. Finally, American Century Companies Inc. lifted its holdings in U.S. Bancorp by 20.9% during the 2nd quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 9,184,921 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $476,881,000 after buying an additional 1,590,023 shares in the last quarter. 74.40% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.