Companies are evolving into choosier shoppers when it comes tobanking providers. There has been a marked uptick in the number ofsmall and midsize companies that are issuing requests for proposalsto select a new bank, according to a quarterly survey byconsultancy Greenwich Associates, and the biggest thing motivatingcompanies seems to be the level of fees they're paying.

According to Greenwich, 20% of midsize companies issued RFPs inthe first half of this year, up from the 11% that did so in thesecond half of 2009. More than 15% of small companies issued RFPs,up from 7% in the second half of last year. Greenwich says the paceof RFP issuance is “truly striking” given that usually about 10% ofsmall and midsize companies switch banks in a given year.

“We had traditionally seen a real hesitation to move,” saysChris McDonnell, a vice president and consultant at Greenwich. “Tosee this increasing number of requests for proposals and that typeof openness to switching is bad news for the lower performers inthe banking space.”

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Susan Kelly

Susan Kelly is a business journalist who has written for Treasury & Risk, FierceCFO, Global Finance, Financial Week, Bridge News and The Bond Buyer.