We've been collecting banking humor -- funny stories, jokes about banking or customer relations, and other humorous material for a while now, as well as writing some of our own. Visit this page to catch up on banker humor. It will bring a chuckle on an otherwise stressful day.
Hurt Feelings Report
Who says those in compliance, audit and security have no sense of humor. We deliver reports that tell it like it is. We didn't "do it" we just "report it." Still, our fellow bankers complain about to us. Well, here is a report to track these complainers in both Word and PDF.
Compliant Gift Wrapping
In this humorous video, Andy Zavoina demonstrates how to wrap a gift in a compliant manner.
(Adapted from "And that is How S#&t Happens," author Unknown)
In the beginning
Was the proposed rule
And then came the assumptions
And the assumptions were without form
And the proposed rule was completely without substance
And the darkness was upon the face of the bankers
And they spaketh amongst themselves, saving
“It is a crock of crap and it stinketh.”
And the bankers went unto their Associations and sayeth,
“It is a pail of dung, and none may abide the odour thereof.”
And the Associations went unto the Sub-Committees
And sayeth unto them,
“It is a container of excrement, and it is very strong
Such that none here may abide by it.”
And the Sub-Committees went unto their Congressmen & Senators and sayeth,
“It is a vessel of fertilizer, and none may abide its strength.”
And the Congressmen & Senators spoke amongst themselves, saying one to another.
“It contains that which aids plant growth,
And it is very strong.”
“It promotes growth and is very powerful.”
And the Congressmen & Senators went unto the President and sayeth unto him,
“This new rule will actively promote the growth
And efficiency of all banks, and these areas in particular,
And will serve as a comfort and protection for our constituents.”
And the President looked upon the rule and saw that is was good
And the rule became
Feel free to use any regulation you feel appropriate.
Provided to BOL by Anita Garrett, CRCM
Banking and Economy Stress Disorder
The current economy and banking crisis is no laughing matter, but Kathy Emery and Mary Beth Guard relate a comical viewpoint of the effects it has on all of us. Take a break from the stress and enjoy a healthy dose of laughter!
Sleeping Like a Baby
Harold explained that he needed to buy a CD. He was closing his brokerage account and wanted to move the funds into the bank. "The wildly fluctuating stock market has me sleeping like a baby," he explained.
"That's a bad thing?", asked the bank's CSR. "Oh, yeah", replied Harold. "I sleep for a couple of hours,
then wake up and cry for a couple of hours."
Quips and Quotes
"There's so little money in my bank account, my scenic checks show a ghetto."
-- Phyllis Diller
"I went to the bank and went over my savings. I found out I have all the money that I'll ever need. .. . If I die tomorrow."
-- Henny Youngman
"When your bank account is so overdrawn that it is positively photographic, steps must be taken."
-- Dorothy Parker
"I don't have a bank account, because I don't know my mother's maiden name."
-- Paula Poundstone
"[N]o matter how much the boss likes you, if you work in a bank you can't bring home samples.
-- Eddie Cantor
"Anytime four New Yorkers get into a cab together without arguing, a bank robbery has just taken place."
-- Johnny Carson
"The husband who wants a happy marriage should learn to keep his mouth shut and his checkbook open."
-- Groucho Marx
Need new employees?
A woman walked up to the branch manager of a bank.
"Are you hiring any help?" she asked.
"No," he said. "We already have all the staff we need."
"In that case, would you mind trying to find someone to
help me in the safe deposit area?" she asked.
Balancing the Checkbook
Michael was supposed to be taking care of the finances and balancing the checkbook, but his wife Cindy kept having to straighten it out. Tired of having to balance his messed-up checkbook, Cindy
made a deal with him; she would look at it, but only after
he had spent a few hours trying to wrestle it into shape.
The following night, after spending hours poring over stubs
and figures, Michael said proudly, "I've done it! I made it
Impressed, Cindy came over to take a look. "Let's see...
mortgage 550.00, electricity 70.50, phone 35.00." Her brow
wrinkled as she read the last entry. "It says here ESP, $615.
What the heck is that?"
"Oh," he said, "That means, Error Some Place!"
Arguing about Money
Heather's husband, Chad, was called into his bank to discuss
"Your finances are in terrible shape," the banker stated. "Your
checking account is overdrawn, your loan is overdue."
"Yes, I know." said Chad. "It's my wife, Heather. She is out of
"Why do you allow your wife to spend more money than
you have ?" asked the banker.
"Frankly," replied Chad with a deep sigh, "because I'd
rather argue with you than with her."
BOL's "Do Not Annoy the Compliance Officer" sign -- PDF format
Top Ten Ways to Know You Are a Compliance Professional -- by Anita Garrett, CRCM
Complianceville - a special verse. Image Dr. Seuss visits the World of the Compliance Professional by Anita Garrett, CRCM
Evil Thing to Do
The customer had come in to withdraw cash from savings before hitting some sales at the local mall. As she fumbled for her account number, I noticed a remote control for a television set in her purse.
"Do you always carry your TV remote?" I asked.
"No," she replied. "But my husband refused to come
shopping with me, so I figured this was the most evil thing
I could do to him."
An Ode to My Last Day of Training on the PATRIOT Act by BOL User "Bear Collector" (PDF format)
The corporate Restroom Trip Policy (PDF format)
Compliance Related Attention Deficit Disorder
Nigerian Scammer Meets Surfer Dude
Correspondence with a 419 Con Man
Basic ethics: Thou Shall Not Fib
The bank's training director sent a memo out to all staff members that said "In next month's training session, I plan to address ethics. To help you prepare for the session, please be sure to read Subsection 215(e) of Title 18 (United States Code). Title 18 is where the Bank Bribery Act is located."
The next month, as the training director began the training session, she asked for a show of hands of all those who had read 18 USC Section 215(e). Every hand went up.
She smiled, then said, "Section 215 only has four subsections - a through d. There is no 215(e) in Title 18. Now, let's talk about ethics."
That'll Scare 'Em
Our security officer, Leslie, often has to tackle tough problems, including unruly customers, suspected check forgers, and irate delinquent safe deposit box renters. She always maintains a good attitude, frequently singing along with the radio while she completes her reports and other paperwork.
One day, I mentioned to our president that I was a little concerned about the security officer's personal safety in dealing with all the bad characters she encounters.
He said, "Don't worry! If you see anyone who looks suspicious, just warn them that Leslie knows karaoke."
From the true crime archives:
Hungry Kidnappers Make Stupid Mistake
In January, 2003, four men kidnapped Edward Lampert, one of the richest men in America, from a parking garage in a wealthy New York suburb as he was leaving work. After holding him hostage for little more than one day, he was released after promising to pay his captors $5 million in ransom.
The idiot kidnappers were instead rounded up and arrested within days. It seems that while they had their hostage, they got a case of the munchies and used their victim's credit card to order pizza, among other things. Police found them a few days later at the same location to which their pizzas had been delivered.
Spelling is a Prerequisite for Good Counterfeiters
In February, 2003, the Tallahassee Democrat carried the story of a Florida State University student who had embarked on what he undoubtedly believed would be a profitable side job as an ID counterfeiter. One small problem. The otherwise great-looking fake California driver's licenses had a misspelling where it was supposed to say "Motor Vehicle".
The Compliance Officer's Christmas List by Zaibatsu and Dawnie.
What if you wrote it in "Redneck"?
His dying wish . . .
Bill was on his deathbed when the trust officer arrived at the hospital for a visit. With a weak and pitiful voice he implored the trust officer to see to it that one of his last wishes would come true. "Please," said Bill, "make sure that my wife marries our friend Kenneth after I die."
"But I thought you hated Kenneth," replied the puzzled trust officer.
"With his last breath, Bill said, "I do!"
Mr. Vice President
Roger was very excited about being promoted to Vice President at the bank. He just couldn't quit bragging about it. Finally, his wife couldn't take it any longer. She said, "You're so full of yourself! Vice president is no big deal. They even have a vice president of prunes at the grocery store."
"That is not so!" said Roger. To prove it, he dialed the grocery store's number. When the operator answered, he asked, "May I speak to the Vice president of prunes?"
"Sure, Canned or Dried?", replied the operator.
Not the kind of customer you want
The new account representative had a puzzled look on her face as she looked at the elderly looking gentleman in front of her and noted that his driver's license indicated he was not all that old. As she looked at him inquiringly, he says, "Look at me. I'm old and worn out.
You'd never believe that I used to live the life of Riley.
I wintered on the Riviera, had a boat, four fine cars, the
most beautiful women, and I ate in all the best restaurants
The CSR asked, "What happened?"
"One day Riley reported his credit cards missing!"
Thieves driving a big truck apparently attached chains to an ATM machine at a Sydney, Australia service station April 30, 2002 and drug it from the building. As they made their getaway, the machine burst into flames because of the heat generated by dragging it behind the truck. Officers subsequently found it abandoned, along with the cash inside it, by a creek.
Daily Telegraph (Australia) 1-May-02
This is gonna be expensive
On a visit to Dallas, Jill couldn't wait to visit one of the most famous Texas retail stores located not far from their hotel. Her husband hailed a cab. They got
in and he told the driver, "My wife wants to go to
The cabbie looked over his shoulder at the husband and wife and asked,
"And the gentleman? Does he want to go to the bank
or the pawn shop?"
True story (or so we're told.) Carl works in the operations department in the central office of a large bank. Employees in the field call him when they have problems with their computers. One night he got a call from a woman in one of the branch banks who had this question: "I've got smoke coming from the back of my terminal. Do you guys have a fire downtown?"
Getting historical with the customer
A man complains to a friend, "I can't take it anymore."
"What's wrong?" his concerned friend asks.
"It's my bank. Every time I apply for a loan, they get historical!"
"You mean hysterical," his friend said, chuckling.
"No, I mean HISTORICAL," the man insists. "Every
time I talk to them about a possible loan, they say "We still remember that
time when we had to charge off ...."
Oops! You forgot something!
Tow truck drivers in East Kilbride, Lanarkshire, UK,
pulled an ATM from a bank, placed it onto their tow truck and drove away, leaving behind the ATM which fell from their truck.
The Spell Checker
Eye halve a spelling chequer
It came with my pea sea,
It plainly marques four my revue
Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.
Eye strike a key and type a word
And weight four it two say
Weather eye am wrong oar write
It shows me strait a weigh.
As soon as a mist ache is maid
It nose bee fore two long
And eye can put the error rite
Its rarely ever wrong.
Eye have run this poem threw it
I am shore your pleased two no
Its letter perfect in it's weigh
My chequer tolled me sew.
Hears all, knows all
Sherry, one of the bank's trust officers, noticed that one of their customers, Mr. Throgmorton, had been in the trust department much more than usual recently. She asked Allen, another trust officer, what was up.
"Well, as you know," replied Allen, "Mr. Throgmorton is getting elderly and has had serious hearing problems for a number of years. He finally saw a specialist and was fitted for a set of hearing aids that allows him to hear 100%."
"The thing is," Allen continued, "He hasn't told his family yet. He just sits around and listens to their conversations. As a result of what he's heard, he's changed his will three times!"
The memorial stone
After Richard's death, his wife Paula went in to see her loan officer with a request for a $30,000 loan, telling the loan officer the funds are necessary for "after-death expenses."
The loan officer quizzes Paula. "Did Richard not have a prepaid funeral benefit fund?" "No," Paula replied, "The funeral cost me $5,500." "What other expenses are there?" the loan officer asked. "Well, there was a hospital bill. After insurance it was almost $5,000."
"By my calculation, that's a total of just over $10,000. What other after-death expenses do you have?", the loan officer inquired.
"Well, I need the rest for the memorial stone."
"You need nearly $20,000 for a memorial stone? You've got to be kidding! What kind of stone is it?"
"Oh, it's a really, really nice big one", replied the bereaved widow. "It's nearly 3 carats."
Three Scottish store
robbers stole about $30,000
worth of cash, stamps and phone cards, then decided
to disable the store's video cameras. Unfortunately, they were having trouble seeing what they were doing, so they removed their
masks to better see the cameras,
according to police who quickly rounded them up
using the close-up pictures from the security camera
system that the thieves never did successfully disable.
Scottish Daily Record 8-Jan-02
That's the policy
A customer moves away from a bank window,
counts his change, and then goes back and says
to the cashier,
"Hey, you gave me the wrong change!"
"Sir, you stepped away from the counter," said the
cashier. "We don't make corrections after you
leave. There's nothing I can do about it now.
That's the policy of this bank."
"Well, ok," answered the customer.
"Just thought you'd like to know that you gave me
an extra twenty. Bye."
The secret of good customer service
Two financial institutions were located in the same downtown high rise building and employees from the two institutions frequently saw each other on their way to and from work.
One day, at the end of an unbearably hot, humid day, a 35 year old customer service representative from one of the institutions was riding in the elevator with a 70 year old CSR from the other institution. The younger woman was completely frazzled. The older woman was fresh as a daisy.
"I don't understand," she marveled, "how you can listen to complaining customers from morning until night, on a day like this, and still look so spry and unbothered when it's over. What's your secret?"
The older CSR replied:"Are you speaking to me? Sorry, I can't hear a thing. The battery in my hearing aid went dead a few years ago."
Whose slogan is it?
A professor was giving a lecture on company slogans in a
college advertising and marketing class.
"Joe," he asked, "which company has the slogan, 'Come fly
the friendly skies'?"
"United." Joe answered.
"Brenda, can you tell me which company has the slogan,
"Don't leave home without it?"
Brenda answered "American Express" with no
"Now John, tell me who uses the tagline, 'Just do
John answered, "My boss."
You never believe me
A senior citizen turned himself into the police, reporting he thought he had robbed a branch Wells Fargo Bank a few days earlier. His confession wasn't taken very seriously by the police because he couldn't recall the date or time of the supposed robbery, the location of the branch, or even the nearest cross street. Coupled with his advanced age, ill health, and the fact that he carried a hospital bag, and said he wanted to go back into the hospital's psychiatric ward, the robbery claim seemed highly unlikely. Nonetheless, upon investigating, law enforcement authorities discovered that the elderly gentlemen had not only robbed the bank as he claimed, he was also responsible for three other bank robberies!
There's more than 1 way to skin a cat
Mary Sue passed away in the middle of the night,
so her husband, Bubba, called 911. The operator
answering the call said they would be sending
someone over right away.
"Where do you live?" asked the operator.
Bubba answered, "At the end of Eucalyptus Lane."
Then the operator asked, "Could you spell that
There was a long pause, until Bubba finally said,
"How about if I drag her over to Oak Street
and you can pick her up there?"
Overheard in the teller line
"Darling," said the young man to his new bride.
"Now that we are married, do you think you will be able
to live on my modest income?"
"Of course, dearest, no trouble," she answered.
"But what will you live on?"
Know your customer
AML Bank initiated a very strict Know Your Customer policy, collecting detailed information about each customer in order to verify identity. One day Lisa, who is five feet, three inches tall and pleasingly plump, came in to open a new account. She filled out her new account application and handed it back to Marge, the CSR. After noting that Lisa had indicated on the form that she was Five-foot-eight, 125 pounds, Marge pondered the information for a minute before leaning over and gently saying, "Lisa, this is not the Internet."
Gee, aren't you glad the manager got involved?
A supervisor overheard a teller saying to a customer,
"No, ma'am, we haven't had any for quite some time now,
and it doesn't look as if we'll be getting any more."
Alarmed by what was being said, the supervisor rushed over
to the customer who was walking out the door and said,
"That isn't true, ma'am. Of course, we'll have some
soon. In fact, I personally placed an order for them
just a couple of days ago."
Then the supervisor drew the teller aside and growled,
"Never, never, never, never say we don't have something.
If we don't have it, say we ordered it and it's on its
way. Now, what was it she asked if we had any?"
"Counterfeit bills. Our ATM gave her one the other day and she was very shook up about it."
How your customer may feel sometimes
This letter has circulated all over the Internet. It purports to be a letter sent by a bank customer to his bank.
I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which I
endeavoured to pay my plumber last month. By my calculations some three
nanoseconds must have elapsed between his presenting the check and the
arrival in my account of the funds needed to honor it. I refer, of
course, to the automatic monthly deposit of my entire salary, and
arrangement which, I admit, has only been in place for eight years.
You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of
opportunity, and also for debiting my account by $50 by way of penalty
for the inconvenience I caused to your bank. My thankfulness springs
from the manner in which this incident has caused me to rethink my
errant financial ways. You have set me on the path of fiscal
righteousness. No more will our relationship be blighted by these
unpleasant incidents, for I am restructuring my affairs in 2002,
taking as my model the procedures, attitudes and conduct of your very
I can think of no greater compliment and I know you will be
excited and proud to hear it. To this end, please be advised of the
following changes. I have noticed that whereas I personally attend to
your telephone calls and letters, when I try to contact you, I am
confronted by the impersonal, ever-changing, pre-recorded, faceless
entity which your bank has become. From now on I, like you, choose only
to deal with a flesh-and-blood person.
My mortgage and loan repayments will, therefore and hereafter,
no longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by check,
addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your
branch whom you must nominate. You will be aware that it is an
offense under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an
envelope. Please find attached an Application Contact Status which I
require your chosen employee to complete. I am sorry it runs to eight
pages, but in order that I know as much about him or her as your bank
knows about me, there is no alternative. Please note that all copies of
his or her medical history must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and
the mandatory details of his/her financial situation (income, debts,
assets and liabilities)must be accompanied by documented proof.
In due course I will issue your employee with a PIN number which
he/she must quote in dealings with me. I regret that it cannot be
shorter than 28 digits but, again, I have modeled it on the number of
button presses required to access my account balance on your phone bank
As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Let me level
the playing field even further by introducing you to my new telephone
system, which you will notice, is very much like yours.
My Authorized Contact at your bank, the only person with whom I will
have any dealings, may call me at any time and will be answered by an
automated voice service: Press buttons as follows:
On a more serious note, we come to the matter of cost. As your bank has
often pointed out, the ongoing drive for greater efficiency comes at a
cost which you have always been quick to pass on to me.
- To make an appointment to see me.
- To query a missing payment.
- To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.
- To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping.
- To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to
- To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home.
- To leave a message on my computer, a password to access my computer is required. Password
will be communicated at a
later date to the Authorized Contact.
- To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through
- To make a general complaint or inquiry. The contact will then
be put on hold, pending the attention of my automated answering service.
While this may on occasion involve a lengthy wait, uplifting
music will play for the duration of the call. This month I've chosen a
refrain from "The Best of Woodie Guthrie:
"Oh, the banks are made of marble, With a guard at every door, And the
vaults are filled with silver, that the miners sweated for."
Let me repay your kindness by passing some costs back. First, there is
a matter of advertising material you send me. This I will read for a fee of $20 per page. Inquiries from the Authorized Contact will be billed at
$5 per minute of my time spent in response. Any debits to my account,
as, for example, in the matter of the penalty for the dishonored check,
will be passed back to you. My new phone service runs at 75 cents a
minute. You will be well advised to keep your inquiries brief and to the
Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an
establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new arrangement.
May I wish you a happy, if ever-so-slightly less prosperous, New Year?
Your Humble Client,
Was he from your bank?
Customer: "I'd like an under the mouse mat, please."
Salesperson: "Certainly sir, we've got a large
variety, $1.95 each."
Customer: "But will they be compatible with my
Salesperson: "Hmmm, have you got one of those
Customer: "Yes, it's a 17" !"
Salesperson: "Then you better get one of these
Customer: "But, is it Y2K approved ?"
Salesperson: "Well,...to be on the safe side, maybe
you should better get one of these blue ones for
Back by popular demand!
Last year, Andy Zavoina posted on Bankers' Threads a hilarious parody of "'Twas the Night Before Christmas". The parody was titled "'Twas the Night Before Examiners" and its author is unknown. This is a banking humor classic.
'TWAS THE NIGHT
BEFORE THE EXAMINERS
'Twas a bright Monday morning and all through the bank,
We awaited the examiners, our spirits were dank,
The policies were bound in a book with great care,
Now all we could do was just mutter a prayer.
The staff was so nervous just thinking of Feds,
While visions of violations danced through their heads.
With the Chairman in Vegas, the President in Vail,
Would they come back to find us in jail?
When out in the lobby there arose such a clatter,
We sprang from our desks to see what was the matter.
And what to our unlucky eyes should appear,
But a man with a badge and eight of his peers.
With computers and briefcases and faces so numb,
We knew in a flash that our time had just come.
More rapid than soldiers he filed in his clan,
And he gathered them all in an office to plan.
"Be picky, be thorough, be tough, use your weight,
To let them all know you have control of their fate.
To Credit, to Audit, go make them feel small,
Now dash away, dash away, dash away all."
And then in a twinkling we heard through the door,
The sharpening of dozens of claws on the floor
And as the door opened, our eyes grew quite large,
Out came the head honcho, the Examiner-in-Charge.
He was dressed up like Rambo, from his head to his feet,
He looked like he craved a good piece of raw meat.
A bundle of printouts he held close to his chest,
For two long weeks the copier would not rest.
His eyes did not twinkle, his brows did not bend,
Is there anyone out there this man could call friend?
He was calm and collected, so passive and cold,
He backed down to no one but God we are told.
The stub of a pencil he held tight in his teeth,
From his belt hung an APR Examiner tucked in a leather sheath.
But first to the break room to fill up his large belly,
Free coffee and soft drinks and donuts with jelly.
He'd work for an hour and then break for some lunch,
Where he went for two hours, we don't have a hunch.
For the rest of the day he would talk on the phone,
And tie up the line 'til the time to go home.
For weeks this routine just seemed to drag on,
When finally his troops had even all gone.
And then the day came when he said we should meet,
We entered "his" office, he said "take a seat."
"Regs have all changed, your policy stinks,
Our file samples should be doubled methinks.
Looking at HMDA, it's not your best year,
You need creative underwriting, it's all crystal clear.
Your Reg. DD schedule is wrong, you must cut your fees,
What do you mean who is TiLA, rethink your compliance strategies.
But what we won't stand for is legal infractions,
If you don't add controls, we could take further actions.
Now don't feel so badly, such problems aren't rare,
But I still feel impelled to give you a good scare."
He spoke no more words, but walked straight out the door,
We followed him wondering if he would be telling us more.
He then shook his finger at us from afar,
And nodding his head he got into his car.
And we heard him exclaim as he opened a beer,
"You passed your exam, I'll see you next year!"