Nichols to CEOs: Spending Bill a “Missed Opportunity” for Reg Relief

In an email to bank CEOs today, ABA’s Rob Nichols expressed his disappointment over the omission of meaningful regulatory relief provisions from the compromise omnibus spending bill that was presented to the House and Senate late last night. The bill contains only one measure — proposed by ABA in 2013 –requiring regulators to study the effects of Basel III’s capital requirements on mortgage servicing assets.

Despite the defeat, Nichols said that the aggressive pursuit of reg relief will continue. “Reg relief is a necessity, so we will continue to seek solutions, both legislative and regulatory,” he said. “And while 2016 is unlikely to be a robust legislative year on Capitol Hill, it’s a year bankers can, and must, use to reset expectations.”

Nichols emphasized the need for the industry to build its “political muscularity” by increasing grassroots engagement by bankers at all levels — from CEOs to tellers. He added that the industry must also be “more deliberate” in who it chooses to support with funding, manpower and other resources.

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