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Hultgren Named Co-Chair of Congressional FinTech and Payments Caucus

Congressman Hultgren has also been named a Co-Chair of the Congressional FinTech and Payments Caucus, an informal group of members dedicated to innovation, growth and education in the emerging fintech arena. The Caucus serves as a resource for members and their staffs to learn how fintech companies are changing the way financial services are delivered to consumers and businesses.

CBAI is keenly interested in fintechs and their impact on the community banking profession. Last week CBAI submitted a comment letter to the OCC on the Agency’s proposal to move forward with considering applications for national banking charters for fintech companies. CBAI’s believes fintechs must compete fairly with community banks and that fintechs approved for national banking charters must not have all of the advantages of being a national bank with limited requirements, regulations, and liability.

CBAI congratulated Congressman Hultgren on being named Co-Chair of the FinTech and Payments Caucus and looks forward to working with him on fintech issues as they intersect with the interests and concerns of community banks.

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CBAI Urges OCC to Delay Moving Forward in Chartering New Fintech Companies

In a January 13, 2017 comment letter, CBAI urged the Office of Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) to delay moving forward with chartering new fintech companies until a number of concerns have been addressed and resolved. Read Comment Letter.

Before chartering fintechs, the OCC needs to demonstrate that it has the requisite expertise and is fully prepared to assume the many new responsibilitiesthat comes with a new charter. There are many related questions that must be answered, not the least of which is who will bear the cost of getting the OCC fully prepared to assume these new responsibilities? Community banks certainly do not want to, nor should they be required to, bear any of those costs.

The legal authority permitting the OCC to charter fintechs has been challenged by the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, on behalf of state banking regulators, and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), the Ranking Member of Senate Banking Committee. The legal authority charter fintechs must be indisputably established before the OCC moves forward with considering applications for fintechs.

Despite being disruptive, Fintechs have the potential to be transformative for the entire financial service profession. A single regulator acting unilaterally in chartering, examining, supervising and regulating fintechs does not appear to be in the best interests of the profession, consumers and the economy. The cooperation and coordination between all of the national and state banking regulators is needed on areas of responsibility so that the collective expertise and unique perspectives of all agencies can be brought to bear on these important issues.

Unfortunately, by the very nature of their limited-purpose business models, fintechs already enjoy a competitive advantage over community banks. This competitive advantage, however, must not be exacerbated through lack of regulation and fintechs; must comply with all banking laws, rules and regulations, regardless of the limited scope of their activities. Fintechs cannot have the advantages of a national bank charter with limited requirements, regulations and liability. Read Comment Letter.

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CBAI Congratulates Congressman Hultgren for Ascension to Committee Leadership

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CBAI has extended congratulations to Illinois Congressman Randy Hultgren (R-14) for his ascension to Vice-Chairman of the Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Securities and Investments of the House Financial Services Committee for the 115th Congress. This subcommittee has jurisdiction over capital markets, capital formation, venture capital, market structure and securities, including the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). CBAI looks forward to working with Congressman Hultgren on important issues that affect community banks and their communities.

January 10, 2017

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SAVE the DATE: 2017 FHLB-Chicago Member Meetings

The 2017 FHLB-Chicago Member Meetings are coming to a city near you this spring. Agenda topics include balance sheet management strategies, strategies for a changing rate environment, 2017 economic outlook, and the FHLB-Chicago's 2016 financial results. Watch for your meeting invitation with event registration dates to arrive soon. Read More.

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CMS Lists Banks Participating in Payroll Gap Assistance Loans

This is just a reminder that in 2015 the Illinois Department of Central Management Services (CMS) created a website listing financial institutions that will participate in Payroll Gap Assistance (PGA) Loans if the ongoing budget impasse or court rulings prevent the State of Illinois from issuing paychecks to state employees. In June, the Governor and the Legislature agreed to a six month “stop gap” budget that is scheduled to expire December 31, 2016. It does not seem likely a deal will be reached for a state budget prior to the expiration of this temporary budget, and the issue of paying state employees could be revisited. Illinois community banks that would like to be listed on the CMS site should complete the registration form.