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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Mnuchin to Revisit Regional, Midsize, Community Bank Regs

In written responses to Senate Finance Committee members following his confirmation hearing last week, Trump Treasury secretary nominee Steven Mnuchin strongly endorsed efforts to provide regulatory relief for regional, midsize and community banks.

“[T]aking a fresh look at all aspects of the Dodd Frank legislation should be one of our highest priorities and if confirmed I look forward to working with Congress on this important priority,” he wrote. “It is important that we have a regulatory environment that supports credit flows to all aspects of our economy, particularly in rural and less populated areas, and that small- and mid-sized institutions are not suffering from an inappropriate regulatory burden.”

Mnuchin emphasized -- as ABA has long advocated -- that regulation must be tailored based not only on asset size. “I believe in a regulatory framework that is determined by complexity and activity, not simply size,” he said. “I endorse rethinking regulatory requirements facing large regional banks in order to regulate the banking sector in a more effective manner. In particular, we should examine whether it is appropriate for financial institutions that engage almost exclusively in traditional banking activities with consumers and businesses to be subject to measures intended for our largest and most complex financial institutions.”

He said that his top priority in addressing financial sector regulation is to spur economic growth, adding that any efforts to revisit the Dodd-Frank Act will be to “addressing regulatory issues that limit banks' abilities to lend to small and medium-sized business that will create economic growth and create more jobs.”

Read the questionnaire.