The American Bankers Association today submitted a letter of support for H.R. 2561, the Promoting Access to Capital in Underbanked Communities Act of 2021, which would establish a three-year phase-in period for new banks to comply with federal capital standards, among other provisions designed to promote de novo banking.
Browsing: Rural banking
To help expand access to banking services and promote financial inclusion, Rep. Andy Barr (R-Ky.) last week introduced H.R. 2561, the Promoting Access to Capital in Underbanked Communities Act of 2021, which would establish a three-year phase-in period for new banks to comply with federal capital standards, among other provisions designed to promote de novo formation.
Though the goals for passing of the reintroduced Enhancing Credit Opportunities in Rural America Act of 2021, commonly known as ECORA, haven’t changed much over the last few years, this Congress may have a better shot at leveling the playing field between farm banks and Farm Credit System lenders, ultimately giving struggling farmers and ranchers greater access to affordable credit options. ABA SVP Ed Elfmann details the importance of ECORA’s passage.
Farm banks have held up well despite challenges to the agriculture industry since 2014, and problem loan levels have remained modest, according to a new report from the FDIC.
In the latest Farm Credit Watch, Bert Ely highlights the notable lack of transparency around Farm Credit Administration board meetings. While government agencies are required to be open and accessible to the public except under certain circumstances, Ely raised concerns that FCA has been requiring attendees to its public virtual meetings to pre-register, which he said “represents a deliberate attempt by the regulatory body to discourage the monitoring of its actions.”
Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly yesterday signed into law a bill that will help ensure greater parity at the state level
between banks and the government-sponsored Farm Credit System.
The American Bankers Association joined three other trade groups in a letter to House Rules Committee leaders this week urging them to include an amendment in the next COVID-19 relief bill that would provide funding for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s business and industry guaranteed loan program.
The Senate yesterday confirmed Tom Vilsack to serve as agriculture secretary by a bipartisan vote of 92 to 7. Vilsack previously served in the role during the Obama administration.
Rep. David Scott (D-Ga.) will serve as chairman of the House Agricultural Committee for the 117th Congress, with Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-Pa.) serving as ranking member. Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) will chair the Senate Agricultural Committee, with Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.) serving as ranking member.
For ag lenders, credit quality and the deterioration of agricultural loans, competition from other lenders and weak loan demand remain the top three concerns. For producers, lenders continued to be most concerned about the liquidity, income and leverage of their ag borrowers.