Dec. 5, 2013 – NAFCU Board members met with Fed Board Gov. Jeremy Stein and shared their views on a wide range of issues of interest to both Wednesday during the association’s 21st annual meeting at the Fed.
This year’s meeting addressed the results of the 2013 NAFCU Report on Credit Unions, and a range of issues affecting the credit union industry, among them interchange as well as housing finance reform, CFPB’s qualified mortgage standard and the Fed’s Regulation D limits on account transfers.
NAFCU President and CEO Dan Berger said Wednesday’s meeting produced a free-flowing discussion among Stein and NAFCU’s board members, who answered a steady stream of questions posed by Stein as the discussion moved from topic to topic. “We appreciate Gov. Stein’s interest in credit unions’ perspective on the key issues facing the financial marketplace,” said Berger. “We look forward to a continued dialogue with the Fed going forward.”
During the meeting, Berger reiterated NAFCU members’ perspectives about the varied legislative proposals on housing finance reform. Among credit unions’ top concerns, he said, are the need for guaranteed access to the secondary market going forward and for a government guarantee on mortgage-backed securities.
Several NAFCU Board members, including Debra Schwartz of Mission FCU (San Diego) and Cutler Dawson of Navy FCU (Merrifield, Va.), said credit unions are concerned about how housing finance reform could affect their ability to keep providing mortgages; they were also concerned about how any final housing finance reform package will affect their members’ access to affordable mortgage loans that fit their specific needs.
The credit union representatives aired similar concerns about the potential impact of CFPB’s qualified mortgage standard, which takes effect next month. Several of them, including NAFCU Chair Mike Parsons (First Source FCU), said they have been and will continue to provide a portion of their mortgages “outside the QM box” despite those concerns.
In other discussion, the NAFCU board volunteers urged anew that the Fed might want to consider removing its limits on monthly transfers between accounts of the same accountholder. They said their efforts to fit operations to the monthly six-transfer limit, part of the Fed’s Regulation D, often confuse members. The NAFCU representatives also emphasized the association’s opposition to this summer’s federal district court ruling on the Fed’s interchange rule.
Dawson and Schwartz provided overviews, respectively, on regulatory issues and credit unions’ financial condition. NAFCU Vice Chair Ed Templeton (SRP FCU) presented findings on NAFCU members’ use of the Fed’s services for financial institutions, and board Secretary Jeanne Kucey (JetStream FCU) detailed the economic benefits of credit unions in the marketplace.
Wednesday's meeting was held in the Fed's Board Room, which is located in the Eccles Building in Washington.