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M&T Bank CEO Says New Tech Hub Aimed at Luring Digital Talent

M&T Bank Corp. has created a technology hub in Buffalo, New York, aimed at luring talent that’s traditionally headed toward California’s Silicon Valley and major cities around the U.S.

“We need to attract people so we can accelerate development of digital solutions that make a difference in our customers’ lives,” Chief Executive Officer Rene Jones said in an interview Wednesday on Bloomberg Television.

The bank predominantly serves customers in “mid-tier” cities such as Buffalo, where it’s based, Jones said. The pandemic and resulting work-from-home experience has proven that Americans’ working arrangements can be more flexible than previously thought, he said.

“What’s going to be most important is who creates a work environment that lets employees thrive,” Jones said, adding that Buffalo offers extremely affordable housing options and a high quality of life.

In the wide-ranging interview, Jones said he expects a robust economic recovery in the second half of the year, but that the lending business probably won’t rebound as quickly.

“Loan demand is going to be somewhat tempered for a fairly long time, particularly with larger businesses,” Jones said. With so much cash in the hands of businesses and consumers, companies will use those resources before they start taking on more debt, he said.

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