SDBA eNews

October 7, 2021

Biden Meets with Bank CEOs, Business Leaders to Discuss Debt Ceiling

Failing to raise the debt ceiling and allowing the U.S. to default on its debt would have potentially catastrophic consequences for the economy and for Americans, CEOs of the nation’s largest banks told President Biden yesterday at a White House event. “America simply cannot default on the debt because the U.S. Treasury market is the bedrock of our financial system, domestically and globally,” said Citi CEO Jane Fraser. “Defaulting is going to cause lasting damage to the credibility of the U.S. with investors and markets around the world.”

Beyond that, Fraser added that a default “will hurt consumers, it will hurt small businesses. It’s not an exaggeration to say that even small distortions in the Treasury market can cost taxpayers tens of billions of dollars over many years.” JPMorgan Chase Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon added that “an actual default would be unprecedented,” and that the “effects would be cascading,” and could range anywhere from “recession to a complete catastrophe for the global economy.” Dimon advocated for the removal of the debt ceiling, noting that “we don’t need to have this every couple of years.” Bank of America Chairman and CEO Brian Moynihan also participated in the meeting.

Last month, ABA joined other financial trade association in urging lawmakers to take prompt action to raise the federal debt limit to ensure the continued confidence in the creditworthiness of the U.S. and the functioning of Treasury markets. Watch the eventRead the joint letter on the debt ceiling.

Podcast: How Will the Biden Vaccine and Testing Mandate Apply to Banks?

On the latest episode of the ABA Banking Journal Podcast—sponsored by NICE Actimize Xceed—ABA VP Jonathan Thessin covers what banks need to know about the Biden administration’s COVID-19 action plan, which includes new employer-level vaccination mandates and testing requirements for employees not vaccinated against COVID.

Among other topics, Thessin discusses:

  • The scope of the “emergency temporary standard” to be issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration that would require employers with 100 or more employees to mandate vaccination or weekly testing for their employees.
  • The potential for legal challenges that may prevent the ETS from being implemented.
  • Under which conditions banks may be classified as federal contractors subject to a separate employee-vaccination mandate.
  • Steps banks can take now to make implementation easier once the ETS is officially issued.

Listen to the episode.

U.S. Coin Task Force Urges Increased Circulation of Coins

As part of October’s Get Coin Moving Month, the U.S. Coin Task Force—of which ABA is a member—is urging Americans to return their dormant coins into circulation. There is currently $46.8 billion in coins in circulation, according to the task force, but much of it is sitting unused in 128 million households.

"Returning coins into circulation by spending them, or depositing or exchanging them at banks or kiosks will make a meaningful difference for the millions of American people and businesses that rely on coins to support cash transactions,” the task force said.

Resources to spur increased coin circulation are available on the task force's website, and include best practices and recommendations for increasing coin circulation and decreasing barriers for handling coins in the supply chain, while maximizing equitable access to coins and emphasizing financial inclusion. The task force is also encouraging banks, retailers and others to raise awareness about the circulation issue by using the hashtag #getcoinmoving. Read more.

U.S. Postal Service Launches Financial Services Pilot Program in Select Cities

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) last month quietly launched a pilot program in four U.S. cities offering expanded financial services at certain post office locations in Washington D.C., Baltimore, Falls Church, Va., and the Bronx, New York according to news reports. Consumers may now access check-cashing services at these locations, and USPS is contemplating piloting additional offerings such as bill paying services, ATM access, expanded money order capabilities and expanded wire transfer capabilities, according to reports.

Offering postal banking services on a larger scale would require congressional authorization. However, the pilot program marks a concerning first step toward enabling USPS to enter the banking business. ABA has long been a vocal opponent of postal banking and has previously noted that it could be perceived as a government-endorsed provider competing with taxpaying banks and would create risks that USPS is ill-suited to manage.

“The solution to high retail check-cashing fees is a banking relationship, not a government-subsidized service through the post office,” ABA said in comments to the media on Monday. “It's easier than ever to open a bank account in this country, including Bank On-certified accounts, which are now available in more than half of all U.S. bank branches, and feature low costs, no overdraft fees, robust transaction capabilities such as a debit or prepaid card, and online bill pay. Policies that create new incentives for Americans to remain unbanked undercut significant efforts to bring people into the banking system so they can build for their financial future.”

ABA Launches Refreshed #BanksNeverAskThat Anti-Phishing Campaign

As part of Cybersecurity Awareness Month in October, ABA today launched its award-winning anti-phishing campaign #BanksNeverAskThat. Created in 2020 to help consumers fight phishing fraud, last year’s #BanksNeverAskThat campaign saw nearly 1,700 banks participating. This year ABA hopes to recruit even more banks to join the industry-wide effort.

“The incredible response to last year’s #BanksNeverAskThat campaign inspired us to relaunch a new and improved campaign this October, so we can continue to help bank customers fight back against phishing,” said ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols. “By bringing banks from across the country together in this effort, we’re able to collectively educate bank customers and shine a light on the phishing threat. We're grateful to all the banks that joined this important effort."

Registration is open year-round and participating banks have access to an updated toolkit full of ready-to-use graphics, social posts, digital signage, printables and more. The toolkit material can be co-branded, bank-branded or ABA-branded. Participation is free for every bank, regardless of ABA membership.

Updates to the campaign this year include new animated videos and social media shares, a new quiz to test consumers’ phishing awareness, and a refreshed educational website available at BanksNeverAskThat.comRegister now.

Federal Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman to Speak in Brookings Next Week

Federal Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman, a onetime Midwest community banker, will speak on making monetary policy and the outlook for the U.S. economy on Wednesday, Oct. 13, at 7 p.m. at South Dakota State University in Brookings.

As the nation’s central bank, the Federal Reserve System is charged by Congress with a dual mandate to promote maximum employment and stable prices in the U.S. economy. The System’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) achieves this mandate by influencing interest rates and financial conditions more generally.

As one of six currently sitting members of the Board of Governors and as a member of the FOMC, Gov. Bowman plays an integral role in shaping U.S. monetary policy, which remains historically loose in the wake of the pandemic and the economic disruptions it has imposed on us all. Gov. Bowman will share her perspective on the paths of U.S. monetary policy and economic performance going forward.

The free event is sponsored by the Dykhouse Scholar Program in Money, Banking and Regulation in the Ness School of Management and Economics at SDSU. It will be held at the SDSU Performing Arts Center Larson Memorial Concert Hall. Learn more.

SDBA to Offer Virtual Breaking into Banking 201: Analyzing Repayment Sources

The SDBA will hold Breaking into Banking 201: Analyzing Repayment Sources virtually on Nov. 2, 2021. This nine-module course is a “sequel” to the 101 course and is best taken after completion of that course, though it is not a prerequisite. The 201 course dives deeper into topics covered in modules four, six and eight of the 101 course: analyzing a borrower’s balance sheet, income statement, collateral and risk ratings.

Instructor Andy Keusal spent 18 years in commercial banking, during which he interviewed, hired and trained hundreds of new bankers. In 2005, he found Keusal Learning, where he now helps people master the basics of banking.

This course is most appropriate for credit analysts, lenders, portfolio managers and others who need skills in financial statement analysis and writing credit documents. Learn more and register

ABA to Host Free Webinars on FedNow Service

ABA will host a two-part webinar series on the implementation of the Federal Reserve’s FedNow service. The first webinar, “Getting to Know the FedNow Serivce and How to Prepare,” will take place on Oct. 14 at 1 p.m. CDT. The second webinar, “Introducing FedNow Explorer—A Guide for Your Instant Payments Journey,” will take place Nov. 3 at 1 p.m. CDT.

ABA SVP Steve Kenneally and experts from the Fed will review FedNow features and best practices for implementation and provide an overview of the FedNow Service Readiness Guide designed to help ABA members with preparation. Fed officials will answer questions and provide a live demonstration of how to use FedNow Explorer, a digital experience launching this fall that will guide banks on their journey to implement instant payments. This free webinar series is available to ABA bank members and state association members. Register now.

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Question of the Week

Question: The bank currently provides the risk-based pricing notice in accordance with model forms H-3 and H-4, under the FCRA and Regulation V, for loans secured and not secured by residential real estate, respectively. The bank does not employ a credit scoring model or a tiered system for pricing but is considering such an approach. Do these notices still satisfy the disclosure requirements in that case? Would those systems then require periodic testing under FCRA, or would that be more for purposes of fair lending? 

Answer: If you choose to adopt a risk-based price tier system, then providing model forms H-3 and H-4 will meet the risk-based pricing notice requirements as long as H-3 is used when the consumer requests an extension of credit that will be secured by 1-4 units of residential property and H4 for credit that will not be secured by 1-4 units of residential property. For testing purposes, under the FCRA, the system itself would not require periodic testing but examiners do test on the sufficiency of notices being sent out when you do use a tier-based system:  

VIII. Privacy — Fair Credit Reporting Act (, (pg. 6.29) -  

Regulation V, § 1022.74 -

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Compliance Alliance offers a comprehensive suite of compliance management solutions. To learn how to put them to work for your bank, call 888.353.3933 or email and ask for our Membership Team.

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Contact Alisa Bousa, SDBA, at 605.224.1653 or via email.