On-Site Coverage: Barr Says Consumer Agency Will Help Credit Unions
WASHINGTON -- The top Treasury Department official on credit unions said today that the proposed agency to regulate consumer financial products will give credit unions a more stable regulatory environment in which to operate.
Such an agency will foster a "more predictable regulatory environment" in which it will be "easier to build a sustainable business," Assistant Treasury Secretary Michael Barr told attendees at CUNA's Governmental Affairs Conference.
He said the proposed Consumer Financial Protection Agency will mostly affect big banks and non-banks. He noted that now the government spends 15 times more money regulating banks and credit unions than on non-banks, even though there are five times as many non-banking institutions.
The CFPA "will go a long way toward correcting this misallocation of resources," he said.
The House has passed a regulatory restructuring bill that includes a CFPA. The Senate Banking Committee is working on legislation on the subject though the fate of the CFPA in that chamber is unclear. All Republicans on the panel oppose the CFPA as do some Democrats. Though the Democrats control the Senate 59-41, the rules of that chamber permit the minority party to have significant input on the outcome of legislation.