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ABA Blueprint for Growth

In 2023 and Beyond

We call on Congress and the Administration to embrace the following priorities:

Drive a Healthy and Inclusive Economy.

Banks are in the business of investing in their communities. Policymakers can grow the return on those investments by supporting bank efforts to inject needed capital into rural and underserved communities. We call on Congress to:

Access to Credit for the Rural Economy. Sustain and grow rural America by supporting legislation to lower the cost of credit for farmers and ranchers financing agricultural real estate, as well as rural homeowners seeking credit for housing in communities of 2,500 or less.

New Market Tax Credits. Enact the New Market Tax Credit Extension Act, which would make the New Market Tax Credit program permanent. New Market Tax Credits are a vital tool to promote greater economic growth in economically distressed rural, urban and tribal communities by stimulating the private investment needed to grow businesses and create jobs.

Housing Initiatives. Enact the Affordable Housing Credit Improvement Act and the Neighborhood Homes Investment Act, which would enable the construction of an additional two million affordable homes over the next decade and generate equity investments to rehabilitate properties in distressed neighborhoods, respectively. 

Support a Dynamic and Innovative Banking Industry.

Bank-led innovations in payments and other core services keep America’s banking system safe and state-of-the-art. Policymakers can help maintain a nimble and competitive financial services sector by applying like-kind regulation to like-kind activity and by eliminating regulatory inefficiencies, which disproportionately affect small banks and contribute to banking services migrating outside the regulated industry. We urge Congress and regulators to:

Digital Asset Regulation. Bring stablecoins inside the banking regulatory perimeter, and require equivalent capital, liquidity and consumer protection standards across all stablecoin providers. Ensure banks are not disincentivized relative to nonbank providers and have the regulatory clarity they need to custody digital assets.

Small Business Lending. Extend supervisory authority over nonbank small business lenders and urge the CFPB to streamline its small business lending data collection and reporting rule by requiring only congressionally-mandated data points. The Promoting Fair Lending to Small Businesses Act would ensure equivalent oversight of all small business lenders.

CRA. Apply the Community Reinvestment Act to nonbank lenders and urge banking regulators to simplify the CRA modernization proposal. Doing so would minimize regulatory inefficiencies while also expanding lending to underserved communities and ensuring all financial services providers are prioritizing service to low-to-moderate-income borrowers. 

Foster a Competitive Financial Services Market.

Government oversight of the financial services sector is critical to maintaining a safe and sound banking system, but direct government intervention in banking—whether through price controls, unevenly applied subsidies or direct competition with private companies—distorts the financial services mar- ketplace and can create unintended consequences. Policymakers should:

Credit Unions. Scrutinize whether credit unions are meeting their statutory objective of serving low-to-moderate-income communities in a robust, demonstrable way that justifies their preferential tax treatment over community banks.

CBDC. Resist pressure to pursue a Central Bank Digital Currency, which would establish the Federal Reserve as an advantaged competitor to bank deposits, draining our nation’s deposit base and limiting the availability of credit.

Interchange. Oppose price controls on interchange, which merely transfer wealth from bank customers to a handful of large merchants, with minimal benefit to small businesses.

ESG Mandates. Protect banks’ freedom to make their own lending, investing and other business decisions. We should not let political agendas—whether from the far right or the far left—get between banks and the communities they serve.


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ABA looks forward to collaborating with policymakers on bipartisan initiatives to spur growth and support a robust financial services marketplace.

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