Quarles Praises Financial Industry Performance During Pandemic in Senate Testimony

The financial industry entered the coronavirus pandemic in a position of strength and has continued to support lending to businesses and households throughout the crisis, Federal Reserve Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles will tell members of the Senate Banking Committee tomorrow. In testimony released ahead of tomorrow’s virtual oversight hearing, Quarles noted that the reforms made after the 2008 financial crisis helped to ensure that “banking organizations are well-positioned to serve as a source of strength, not strain, in the current crisis.”

Quarles highlighted several ways that banks—supported by a number of actions by the Fed and other agencies—have provided credit to borrowers, absorbed new deposits from households and businesses and managed an increase in transactions from investors responding to market volatility, “and as a conduit for official-sector support, they have helped stabilize the financial system and restore market function.”

He added that banks will continue to play a critical role as they continue to work constructively with their customers that may be facing prolonged financial hardship as the pandemic continues. “Financial institutions now have an essential part to play in addressing that disruption—as a bridge between the start of this crisis and the completion of our economic recovery.”