ICBA head Cam Fine, railing yet again about the big banks:
Financial meltdowns and taxpayer bailouts, imprudent lending and operational practices, and regulatory indifference from too-big-to-manage and too-big-to-jail managements are all symptoms of the too-big-to-fail disease. And we certainly can’t overlook unnecessary and counterproductive regulatory burdens that fall disproportionately on community banks. [Emph. added]
That’s rich. The “unnecessary and counterproductive regulatory burdens” that has Fine so addled largely came about as a result of Dodd-Frank, a law that Fine and the ICBA supported. In return, he got some exemptions for community banks related to the CARD Act and CFPB oversight. That’s some brilliant legislative strategizing, as now scores of Fine’s own members are under such a severe regulatory burden that they’re essentially no longer viable over the long term.
I’ve long been puzzled about why Fine has it in for the big banks the way he does. There are many policy areas where the interests of the big banks and community banks align. Lobbying over Dodd-Frank is a good example. You’d think he’d spend more time denouncing what’s a much more ominous threat to community banks’ natural turf: credit unions. I may be wrong, but I can’t recall an instance that he’s ever had a bad word to say about them.
Memo to Cam: your campaign against the megabanks is entirely wrong-headed. Even if the big banks were broken up as you’ve been lobbying for, foreign banks would step in to serve the needs of large global customers. Community banks would gain little. For the sake of your members, you ought to be aiming your fire elsewhere. I have a suggestion.
What do you think? Let me know!