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BMO named “Best Big Bank” in Wisconsin by Newsweek

December 16, 2022 | Recognition

BMO is proud to announce it has been named Newsweek’s “Best Big Bank 2023” in Wisconsin. The award reflects BMO’s commitment to helping customers make real financial progress and the bank’s commitment to supporting a thriving economy, sustainable future and inclusive society – inspired by its Purpose to Boldly Grow the Good in business and life

Newsweek, in collaboration with LendingTree, designated award winners by evaluating more than 4,900 banks and credit unions. To win Best Bank for a state, an organization needs to have at least one branch per 100,000 residents and manage at least $10 billion in assets. BMO proudly has 148 branches serving Wisconsin customers and communities. Banks were also evaluated on the overall health of the bank, customer performance and features, digital and branch presence, account and loan options, interest rate offerings and fees. 

“This honor is a testament to BMO’s commitment to helping customers make long-term financial progress. Even in challenging economic times, we ensure we are providing excellent advice, guidance and convenience to our customers. Whether it’s through digital innovation that makes money management easier, or a face-to-face conversation in our branches, or our work throughout Wisconsin’s communities – BMO strives to be the best team in banking for our customers.” 

– Anthony Hudson, Head, Wisconsin Retail Banking

Newsweek’s annual list helps Americans find a financial institution that best serves the needs of customers with quality services and low fees.  

In June of this year, BMO announced it would reduce its consumer and small business banking fees by eliminating both non-sufficient funds (NSF) and overdraft transfer fees, and significantly reduce overdraft fees. The fee changes are part of BMO’s broader low and no-cost offerings to help customers achieve their financial goals, including: 

  • Savings Builder Account – BMO adds a cash reward to customer’s accounts balance when they meet monthly savings goals. 
  • Bank On Certified Account – BMO’s Smart Money™ Account has been awarded Bank On certification for allowing customers access to safe, affordable financial products and services. Bank On’s standards include low costs, no overdraft fees, transaction capabilities such as a debit or prepaid card, and online bill pay. 
  • BMO Real Financial Progress Checks – Goal-based conversations with a financial processional that tracks customers’ goals and ensures they have the right financial tools to meet them. 
  • Smart Progress – Online tools and guidance available to BMO personal banking customers. 
  • BMO Business Focus – Tips and tools for small businesses looking for more financial education specific to small businesses. 
  • Cash Back Rewards Cards – Refreshed this year, the cash back card offers increased rewards on everyday spending. 
  • Total Look – Money management tool available in BMO Digital Banking that allows customers to view and manage their whole financial picture, including non-BMO Harris accounts, in one dashboard. 
  • BMO for Women in Business – Program designed for women entrepreneurs to increase access to capital, educational resources and meaningful networking opportunities. 
  • BMO for Black, LatinX, and Native-owned Businesses – Program designed for Black, LatinX, and Native-owned business owners to increase access to capital, educational resources and meaningful networking opportunities. 

BMO is also committed to supporting the delivery of critical programs in Wisconsin communities. BMO EMpower 2.0, the bank’s five-year, $40 billion commitment to local communities addresses barriers faced by minority businesses, communities and families. The plan also builds upon the bank’s previous five-year, $5 billion EMpower commitment to an inclusive economic recovery to which the bank fulfilled ahead of schedule. BMO’s recent commitments in Wisconsin include: 

  • BMO EMpower Summerfest Grant Program: Nine Milwaukee-area minority-owned business owners received grants of up to $3,500 to cover the costs of being a vendor at Summerfest’s Marketplace in summer 2022. Owners also received networking opportunities with banking executives as well as educational and financial resources to help scale their businesses. 
  • A $650,000 investment this year in several Madison community programs and organizations, such as the Urban League of Greater Madison’s Black Business Hub, The Center for Black Excellence & Culture, and Boys & Girls Clubs of Dane County’s McKenzie Workforce Development Center – part of a broader $1 million commitment to the Madison community through BMO EMpower. 
  • A $115,000 donation to Junior Achievement of Wisconsin in Milwaukee to support general operations throughout Wisconsin communities. 
  • In recent years, BMO also donated more than $4 million to neighborhood programs throughout Wisconsin to commemorate the financial institutions bicentennial. More than 200 Milwaukee organizations benefited, including the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County, United Performing Art’s Fund, and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee. 

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