News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

May 19, 2014

Forbes: First Financial among most trusted

TERRE HAUTE — First Financial has more than 70 branch locations in dozens of communities in Indiana and Illinois. The company, whose shares are traded on the NASDAQ stock exchange, employs about 1,100 people.

First Financial tries to be open, transparent and to always place customers at the center of what it does, Lowery said.

“It’s nice to hear you’re doing things right,” he said.

In 2011, The Banker, a journal owned by the Financial Times Group, named First Financial among the top 200 banks in America and in the top 1,000 in the world.

“All the credit for any recognition we get goes to our employees,” Lowery said. “They really are the face of the bank.”

James Kaplan, director of GMI Ratings, told Forbes that steps taken in the wake of the financial crisis led a large number of financial services business to become ranked among the most trusted companies in America. As a result, GMI created a separate list of the 50 Most Trustworthy Financial Companies.

Companies not included on the list are not necessarily untrustworthy, he told Forbes. However, inclusion on the list can be reassuring to investors that — good or bad — the company is at least providing an honest representation of how it is doing.

“It’s nice to hear you’re doing things right,” Lowery said. “It’s a nice recognition. Now we move on.”

Reporter Arthur Foulkes can be reached at 812-231-4232 or arthur.foulkes@

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