Date of Award


Access Control

Open Access

Degree Name

Applied Economics, M.A.


Economics and Finance Department


Xingwang Qian

Department Home page

First Reader

Xingwang Qian

Second Reader

Theodore Byrley

Third Reader

Ted Schmidt


The COVID-19 pandemic had a tremendous impact on every aspect of life, particularly within the world of banking & finance. All banks saw sharp drops in their stock prices and net income, but my hypothesis is that larger, more established banks maintained more stability during 2020 than smaller banks. This paper analyzes the income statements and balance sheets of M&T Bank (an older, more well-established bank) and Citizens Bank (a less-established bank) during this difficult time.

The first part of my thesis describes similarities and differences between M&T Bank and Citizens Bank. I explain how these similarities and differences may have had an impact on how each bank responded to the pandemic and what resources were available to them during that time. I conclude that M&T Bank has a more solid reputation and more resources available to them, primarily due to their long-standing reputation in comparison to Citizens Bank.

The second part of my thesis begins by analyzing the significant difference in the percentage change in net incomes between the two banks in 2021, with Citizens Bank's net income increasing by 119% from 2020 compared to M&T Bank's 37% increase. I ran a regression model and concluded several variables contributed to this difference. With a time dummy variable in the econometric model, I conclude that M&T Bank was indeed more stable than Citizens Bank with regards to maintaining a stable net income quarter-to-quarter. In other respects, I conclude that the impact of the pandemic on M&T Bank and Citizens Bank were fairly similar, although accounting differences and a lack of insider information may have manipulated the final results.