Debit Card Interchange Fee Caps Delayed


Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke has received more than 11,000 letters commenting on the Federal Reserve Board’s December 2010 proposal to limit interchange fees on debit cards to 12 cents, according to a March 30 report from American Banker.

“Detailed and extensive” comments

Bernanke said many of the letters were “quite detailed and extensive” and justified the Fed taking additional time to review the information and assess the full effects of the proposed limits on U.S. consumers and financial institutions.

Conference to Examine Impact of Fed’s Proposed Debit Card Regulations

What:         A half-day conference will examine the potential impact of proposed Federal Reserve Board regulations on debit card interchange fees. Under the proposed regulations, bank debit card fees charged to merchants for debit card transactions would drop by some 80%. Banks have expressed dismay over what would be a massive revenue loss, while merchants applaud the proposal. The conference will examine what the rules ultimately could mean for consumers, banks and economic efficiency. A final decision by the Fed is expected on April 21, 2011, unless Congress passes legislation to postpone the deadline to allow for further study.

Fed’s Parkinson Says 30% of Banks Have Unsatisfactory Supervisory Ratings

From: Bloomberg

By Joshua Zumbrun

Patrick Parkinson, the Federal Reserve’s chief bank regulator, said about 30 percent of U.S. banks have “less than satisfactory” supervisory ratings.

Parkinson, director of the central bank’s division of banking supervision and regulation, told a gathering of bankers today that while asset quality is “stabilizing,” the “conditions in real estate markets are still very difficult” and the banking system is “still in the repair and recovery stage.”

Maryland regulator faults OCC for not supporting state foreclosure initiatives

From: HousingWire


Maryland’s Commissioner of Financial Regulation Mark Kaufman met with large servicers in 2009 to voice concerns about their ability to  handle a growing number of foreclosures.

In his testimony Tuesday before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s special hearing in Baltimore, Kaufman said he was assured that the mounting casework was manageable.

But by the fall of 2010, it became apparent these companies were overwhelmed and cutting corners, according to Kaufman. Many of the largest servicers had to freeze foreclosures and conduct reviews of thousands of affidavits signed without a review of the documentation. The result has been an investigation from the 50 state attorneys general and federal regulators, as well as a proposed settlement that reached the negotiation stage this week.

ESA Pesticides: The Newest IPD

CRE is please to announce the ESA Pesticides forum.   The forum provides “an interactive discussion of EPA’s implementation of the Endangered Species Act during the Agency’s regulation of pesticides. This subject is increasingly important and controversial because environmental NGOs frequently sue over it, seeking federal court orders dictating EPA’s implementation of the ESA. CRE will cover and report on significant news items about pesticides and the ESA.  We will also research, write and post articles examining various factual, scientific, legal and policy issues on this subject. We welcome and will post all points of view, including those opposing and critical of our own.”