National Meetings

CRA reform proposal spurs debate on lending issues

Advocates who follow lending issues are divided about the likely impact of the proposed revisions to the Community Reinvestment Act. Some who see its potential to expand credit to currently underserved groups are calling the proposal an opportunity of a lifetime; others, who say the proposal fails to promote racial equity, characterize it as a missed opportunity. The current reform proposal, which is soliciting public comments until August 5, will look more closely at the income of borrowers, consider small business lending with a special focus on loans to very small businesses, compare exam findings with so-called “section 1071” data collected by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and take steps to increase credit availability to areas currently considered credit deserts. [Continue]

People are community banking’s differentiator

Customer experience determines your place in the competitive landscape and that experience at community banks is largely determined by staff, Emily Sayer told attendees at the annual convention of the Independent Community Bankers of America. [Continue]

Are the lights dimming on the industry M&A Dance?

Rising interest rates will slow inflation, but it will reduce spending and “it could cause asset quality problems we don’t currently have,” said Curtis Carpenter of the Hovde Group in a presentation Sunday, the first day of the Acquire or Be Acquired conference in Phoenix. Bank earnings are also likely to suffer as expected higher corporate taxes take hold. [Continue]

Financial inclusion promoted at ABA Summit

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) asked bankers to keep “an open mind” as he refocuses the attention of the Senate Banking Committee on housing and urban affairs in addition to its traditional focus on banking. “This committee for too long has been all about Wall Street banks,” said the committee’s chair. “This means you all won’t like everything we do. It’s not personal. It’s about approaching the economy in a different way.” [Continue]