Invest: Miami speaks with Calixto Garcia-Velez, Regional Executive & Executive Vice President, FirstBank

Invest: Miami speaks with Calixto Garcia-Velez, Regional Executive & Executive Vice President, FirstBank

2022-07-12T03:00:36-04:00October 26th, 2017|Banking & Finance, Miami|

The development slowdown will most drastically affect luxury high-rise residential condominium buildings, which we are not in the space of financing. The high-rise condo market is extremely cyclical, while other property sectors are more stable and allow us to better manage risk. We have had a record year in residential mortgage. As for regulatory burdens, we are optimistic because all banks have to deal with them. It gets in the way of our agility, responsiveness and costs, which unfortunately get passed on to the consumer. There is a happy medium that is good for everyone, but the pendulum swung to another extreme after the most recent financial crisis. First and foremost, when dealing with a bank our size or smaller, it is with real people that know you. When taking a closer look at what happened during the crisis, the syndicated loan market and the decoupling of the individual with the financial institution, the stripping of residential mortgages on Wall Street and all of the complex structures are what caused the crisis. At the end of the day, if a client ever has a problem, they know they can call us, and we’ll figure it out together. On the positive side, factors propelling the strength of the real estate market – particularly commercial and industrial – have contributed to opportunities for the growth of FirstBank. Foreign capital continues to pour into Miami, and the bank’s expanding portfolio is a reflection of what is available. As the economy continues to do well, our job is to target the right sectors and to deliver on what we promise.