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Monday, May 19, 2014

ABA’s Walika: Bankers’ Success May Mask Reg Burden Effects

Regulators should not assume that community bankers’ resilience means that they don’t need regulatory relief, ABA EVP Christine Walika said in a Topic A editorial. Reflecting on conversations at the recent ABA Community Bankers Council meeting in Kansas City, Mo., she urged regulators and members of Congress to offer solutions. Walika said:

[Bankers are] looking for ideas for hedging against interest rate risk that regulators won’t frown upon, for instance, and suggestions for competing on loans when margins are razor thin and the credit union across the street has a 30% pricing advantage. They want to grow. They want to deliver on their promises to customers and shareholders alike. They want to succeed.

Bankers at the meeting were encouraged by an improved tone in recent exams, but they need more, Walika explained. “Washington should not misread bankers' can-do spirit as a reason to stop trying to help.”

Read Topic A.

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