The bank doesn't break the statistic down by industry, but most of the uptick came from the manufacturing sector, said Mike Ward, senior vice president and region manager for Wisconsin.
"In particular, we've seen the tool and die segment of the manufacturing industry adding some equipment in the last four to five months," Ward said.
Many recent purchases by U.S. Bank customers have been industrial space, he said.
"There's really two things—one is our existing customers are starting to add equipment and in some cases purchase additional space and then we also have general activity," Ward said.
Small businesses mostly refinanced last year, but this year, they're also investing in the company, he said.
"This year they've, I think, taken the next step and are expanding along with the economy," Ward said. "It's now the second year of businesses being healthy, and they're willing to take the next step."
The bank also has a Manufacturing Vendor Finance unit, which has seen an increase of almost 97 percent in Wisconsin since 2009, he said.
The segment finances equipment for manufacturers like A&J Environmental Pallets in South Milwaukee.
A&J, with the help of a U.S. Bank equipment loan, purchased a more automated pallet machine in May that has tripled its pallet production, said Jack Santoro, president.
Ward said the lending increase was driven by recovery in other industries, and the bank hasn't adjusted its lending guidelines.
"I don't see any change in my group's lending standards or credit determination standards," he said. "There's more activity there for us to look at."