Regulation

Trump Administration Delays Financial Regulatory Relief Bill

Mark Calabria, chief economist for Vice President Mike Pence, warned Wednesday (Jan. 17) that a financial regulatory relief legislation will have to get in line behind other policy initiatives.

American Banker, citing comments Calabria made to the Exchequer Club, a Washington group that meets to examine financial policy issues, reported that the bill’s passage could be delayed as lawmakers focus on other things first.

“The question really is, where is it going to be in the queue and will [Congress] get to it before” the midterm elections, Calabria reportedly said. Subsequently, he told reporters that the bill’s chance of going through before the midterm elections is under 50 percent.

The bipartisan bill, which was agreed upon in December between the Democrats and Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo, would raise the asset threshold under the Dodd-Frank Act from $50 billion to $250 billion. That would mean in order to be considered a “systemically important financial institution,” the company would have to be worth at least $250 billion. The bill also includes reforms that would help community and medium-sized banks.

Calabria did note the bill should have support of both Republicans and Democrats, but getting it passed is a timing issue. “The only reason I think anyone could have a problem with the Crapo bill is it doesn’t go far enough,” he reportedly remarked. Budget deadlines could delay the bill passage as well.

The White House official also said that while the Trump administration isn’t looking to dismantle the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, it won’t be as partisan under the new head. “You will see a CFPB that issues rules, takes comments [and] reads the Administrative Procedure Act,” he said. “More consumer protection, less social engineering and staying consistent with what the statute actually says.”

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