Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Changes in Bank Regs Will Help the Economy

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Changes in Bank Regs Will Help the Economy

Article excerpt

Regulatory relief and a reduction in our compliance burden are what every bank needs--and what the American economy requires if we're going to get back to the business of banking and start growing our way back to prosperity and full employment.

We're probably not going to get any key legislative solutions to excessive regulation in the current Washington environment. But with your help, we can work the issue from the fringes through regulatory agency corrections, reminding regulators and legislators that meaningful changes in bank regulations can help get the economy off its low-growth trajectory. Together, we can make a difference.

Let me give you some background, and tell you what you can do to help.

In early October, ABA President and CEO Frank Keating wrote to the federal regulators, enumerating six agenda items they could take action on that would make it easier for banks to serve customers, grow communities, and create jobs. Here, in brief, are the issues Frank identified:

1. Remove punitive regulation of mortgage servicing assets.

2. Implement the Volcker Rule in a way that doesn't impose additional compliance obligations for community banks.

3. Implement a more robust, independent ombudsmen program in each agency.

4. Simplify and refocus call reports back to their original intent.

5. Allow limited distributions for S-Corp bank shareholders to pay taxes on earnings.

6. Acknowledge the competitive and systemic disadvantages that community banks face in competing against credit unions and the Farm Credit System.

As part of a continuing process, Frank and I led two delegations of bankers attending ABA's Community Bankers Council fall meeting to the top of the regulatory ladder. We met separately with Comptroller of the Currency Tom Curry and FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg. …

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