Banks Fight Revised U.S. Plan to Monitor Checking Overdraft Fees

February 21, 2014
overdraft news
U.S. banks are seeking to shield from scrutiny the $30 billion they collect annually in checking account fees, saying the proposed requirement for periodic reports is unacceptable even if it exempts small institutions.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau -- along with the FDIC, Federal Reserve, and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency -- proposed that all institutions include detailed breakdowns of their revenue from account fees in the public quarterly reports they file with the FDIC. Resistance from small banks, which earn a bigger chunk of their revenue from such fees than big institutions, reportedly led the FDIC and OCC to break ranks with the CFPB and oppose the change. The regulators on Jan. 14 released a revised plan, which would exempt banks with assets under $1 billion. The Independent Community Bankers of America still does not support the idea, saying that institutions with as much as $10 billion in assets should be excused from the reporting.

The consumer bureau's effort to obtain data on overdrafts is straining its ties with the community banks that the agency has wooed as a counterweight to Wall Street's political heft.

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