July 24 – The Electronic Payments Association President and CEO Janet O. Estep has been named as a member of the steering committee of the Federal Reserve’s Faster Payments Task Force.
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July 3 – Federal Reserve Chair Janet L. Yellen addressed monetary policy and financial stability at the 2014 Michel Camdessus Central Banking Lecture, International Monetary Fund, Washington, D.C. Below are her comments.
Aug 1 – Financial Services Committee Ranking Member Maxine Waters, joined by 37 of her fellow Democrats, delivered a letter urging President Obama to nominate Janet Yellen, current vice chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, to replace Ben Bernanke as chairman of the Federal Reserve when his term expires.
October 21 – Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet L. Yellen gave a presentation titled, “The Outlook for the U.S. Economy and Economic Policy” at the Annual Meeting of the Financial Management Association International. Her comments follow:
February 14 – NACHA—The Electronic Payments Association has announced the election of new officers to its Board of Directors. The Board oversees the governance and administration of NACHA and addresses topics of strategic significance to the ACH Network. It consists of 19 directors representing a diverse set of depository financial institutions of all sizes and types that use and support the ACH Network.
Bankers are encouraged by news from Washington.
By Bill Poquette
This could be an exciting year for all who long for regulatory relief for community banks. Hopes are high and certainly the stars are aligned as well as they ever will be. Following the Republican sweep in the November elections, several developments during President Trump’s transition to office and since the inauguration may serve to heighten the anticipation.
Encouragement came early from the White House with presidential chief of staff Reince Priebus issuing a freeze on regulations. Agencies were ordered to withdraw approved regulations submitted for publication in the Federal Register, and to delay for 60 days implementation of those already published. This presumably affects rules promulgated by federal bank regulatory agencies.
Over at the Capitol, where Republicans eked out a narrow 52-48 Senate margin in November, Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, takes over as chairman of the Banking Committee, succeeding Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala. Crapo has listed reducing regulations for community banks as a priority. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, remains the ranking Democrat on the committee and has indicated support for regulatory relief — although he opposes tampering with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, continues to lead the House Financial Services Committee. One of community banking’s staunchest supporters in the Congress, Rep. Blaine Leutkemeyer, R-Mo., has succeeded the retiring Rep. Randy Neugebauer, R-Texas, as chairman of the Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit.
And community banks have another ally in the new Secretary of the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin. In a written response to the Senate Finance Committee following his confirmation hearing he said, “It is important that we have a regulatory environment that supports credit flows to all aspects of our economy, particularly in rural and less-populated areas, and that small and mid-sized institutions are not suffering from an inappropriate regulatory burden.”
Another element in the unfolding political-regulatory drama is the terms of federal agency chiefs. Expiration dates loom this year for Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry and FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg, and next year for Federal Reserve Board Chair Janet Yellen, FDIC Vice Chairman Thomas Hoenig and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray – if he is not removed sooner, as Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., among others has urged. There are two vacancies on the Federal Reserve Board and Hoenig has been mentioned as a possible candidate.
A compelling case is building for real progress, but euphoria may be a stretch. Washington, D.C., partners in the financial services group at Morrison & Foerster, a leading global law firm, believe that key changes, while significant, may not be sweeping, with more incremental moves coming at key agencies, including the Fed and the CFPB, among others.
Max Cook, president and CEO of the Missouri Bankers Association, describes the situation this way in the January edition of The Missouri Banker newspaper: “If ever there was a time that bankers needed to get energized for change, the time is now. Once 2018 arrives, attention in D.C. turns to congressional elections and it is quite difficult to pass legislation during an election campaign. We can’t afford to wait another year. ”
I’m betting community bankers will rise to the occasion.
Bill Poquette is editor-in-chief of BankNews.
New Fed rule lowers risk of taxpayer bailouts.
By Bill Poquette
A foolproof resolution strategy for too-big-to-fail financial institutions is not topmost on most community bankers’ wish list. But it figured in the presidential campaigns and more recently has been in the news for other reasons.
By Toni Lapp
November 9 – Now that the dust has settled in the wake of one of the most vitriolic presidential campaigns in modern history, bankers want to know what to expect from President-elect Donald Trump. (more…)
October 19 – NACHA —The Electronic Payments Association®, the trustee and rule maker of the ACH Network, has announced Treasury Software as its Preferred Partner for ACH enablement and integration. The Preferred Partner Program identifies leading providers and innovators that work with NACHA to better advocate for and educate the industry on technology and best practices in support of the ACH Network and ACH payments.
October 10 – NACHA —The Electronic Payments Association, the trustee and rule maker of the ACH Network, has recognized the work that the North American Banking Company and the Independent Community Bankers of America have done to create efficient, innovative services for financial institutions and their customers across the country. NACHA has long advocated for and supported innovation on the ACH Network that leverages the value of the Network’s ubiquity and reach. The “All Payments App” that the North American Banking Company and the Independent Community Bankers of America revealed as part of the Federal Reserve Faster Payments Task Force proposal process demonstrates how innovation continues on the ACH Network.