KCUR News
9:59 am
Tue September 28, 2010

Missouri Treasurer Announces Bank Partnership

Kansas City, MO – It will soon be easier for smaller Missouri businesses to get low-interest loans. The state Treasurer has struck a deal with Commerce Bank that will generate up to $100 million of credit. KCUR's Frank Morris reports.

It's part of the state's Linked Deposit Program. Missouri deposits money into a bank; the bank, Commerce Bank in this case, pays the state less than the going rate for interest, and then loans the money to businesses at a discounted rate.

The state loses some investment income, but Treasurer Clint Zweifel says businesses with fewer than 100 employees get a boost.

"If we can lower the cost of capital for small businesses, so that they can invest in plants, expansion and equipment, and hire employees, we have a better chance to create jobs in our state," says Zweifel.

The goal is for Commerce to lend $100 million through the program, $40 million in Kansas City, over the next year.