From one perspective, it seems like a torrid time to be a banker. A handful of financial institutions failed in the first quarter of the year after their depositors fled, spooked by the impact of higher interest rates. After these failures, smaller banks struggled to keep hold of deposits, pushing up their interest costs. At the same time, the economy is cooling, owing to higher rates, raising the prospect of job losses and defaults. Higher rates have almost entirely shut down activity in capital markets. The climbing cost of debt has put off would-be acquirers in the business world, prompting firms to delay issuing bonds and encouraging startups to delay initial-public offerings.