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Bachus Questions Federal Reserve on Interchange Regulations

Rep. Spencer Bachus (R-AL), the incoming Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, along with Rep. Jeb Henserling (R-TX), the incoming Vice Chairman of the Committee, sent a letter to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernake to express their concern over the proposed rules on debit card interchange. The proposed rule stems from the Interchange provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform bill passed last Fall.

In their letter, the Representatives express their concern over the feasibility issuing final rules by the April deadline. They point out that Congress devoted little time to considering the impact of the rule changes before the provision was enacted. Most importantly to credit unions, Reps. Bachus and Henserling state concerns that the small issuer exemption (which applies to card issuers under $10 billion in assets) may wind up creating an unlevel playing field that will hurt credit unions and community banks. They urge the Fed to use all the time it has been given, which will give Congress time to conduct its own review of the intent and impact of the changes to avoiding harm to consumers or competition in the marketplace.

The League is very pleased that Rep. Bachus recognizes the damaging impact that the proposed Federal Reserve Interchange rule could have on credit unions and other smaller issuers, and ultimately on their consumers. The LSCU will continue to work with Chairman Bachus to address this and other important policy issues credit unions face in Washington.

To read the entire letter, visit the LSCU MBL and Interchange resource page.