House Financial Services Ranking Member Patrick McHenry: Use Technology to Serve Unbanked and Underbanked Americans

May 26, 2021Congressional Legislation, News

The House Financial Services Committee recently held a virtual hearing entitled “Oversight of Prudential Regulators: Ensuring the Safety, Soundness, Diversity, and Accountability of Depository Institutions,” where Representative Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.), Ranking Member on the Committee, urged the use of technology to better serve underbanked Americans.

He stressed that the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted “the important role financial technology plays in our day-to-day lives. We should use advances in technology to help bring more unbanked and underbanked Americans into the fold and to close banking deserts.”

The Committee met with prudential regulators, including the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

McHenry praised how Joseph Otting, former Comptroller of the Currency, used a nonpartisan approach to remove regulatory roadblocks and support financial innovation.

He also commended the OCC for finalizing its true lender rule, which he said created the framework necessary for providing affordable credit to consumers. That rule is now under threat after the Senate voted to repeal it last week.

“The OCC and FDIC, under Chair McWilliams, worked to address the overly burdensome mandates that hindered financial technology,” McHenry said. “Together these rules helped bring more Americans under the banking umbrella. We should build on these gains rather than trying to relitigate 2009.”

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