March

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  • NAFCU urges more easing in Reg D transfers (March 31, 2008)
    NAFCU last week commended a proposed easing of Regulation D but urged the Federal Reserve to go further, suggesting an increase to 15 or 20 in the number of transfers allowed monthly for savings accounts.
  • NAFCU’s Sanchez to lead Military Saves panel (March 31, 2008)
    NAFCU Associate Director of Legislative Affairs Javier Sanchez was recently elected chairman of the Military Saves National Partners Committee.
  • Phishing not slowing e-mail use, group says (March 31, 2008)
    Despite concerns about phishing, financial institutions are still slow to adopt "even the most rudimentary forms" of e-mail authentication, according to a recent report from Aite Group.
  • RESPA proposal comments sought (March 31, 2008)
    NAFCU is urging its members to provide the association their input by April 25 on proposed rule changes under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.
  • TJX agreement requires data protections, no fines (March 31, 2008)
    Discount retailer TJX and two data firms it worked with must institute security programs and obtain security audits every two years for the next 20 years under settlements with the Federal Trade Commission announced last week.
  • Treasury ‘blueprint’ foresees charter consolidation (March 31, 2008)
    NAFCU's top lobbyist goes to Treasury today to hear details of a financial regulatory "blueprint" with short-term solutions to today's economic troubles and longer-term measures that could lead to consolidation of the federal bank, savings association and credit union charters and a single federal deposit insurance fund.
  • April 3 mark-up slated on bankruptcy bills (March 28, 2008)
    The Senate Judiciary Committee, at this writing, was scheduled to hold a mark-up next Thursday that will include two bankruptcy bills aimed at allowing homeowners to use the bankruptcy code to avoid foreclosure on their homes.
  • Fed slates meetings on BofA-Countrywide bid (March 28, 2008)
    Members of the public, including credit union representatives, interested in Bank of America's bid to purchase Countrywide Financial Corp. can learn more by attending any of three public meetings being held in April by the Federal Reserve.
  • Final 4Q GDP data reveal little new (March 28, 2008)
    The Bureau of Economic Analysis' latest real GDP report contains few surprises, according to NAFCU Staff Economist Katrin O'Connor, who said the final fourth-quarter growth of 0.6 percent was unchanged from the previous estimate.
  • NAFCU to testify on small-biz credit-card use (March 28, 2008)
    Bill Spearman, president and CEO of Mid-Hudson Valley FCU in Kingston, N.Y., will testify on behalf of NAFCU in an April 3 House Small Business Committee hearing on credit card use.
  • Mortgage workout options detailed in webcast (March 27, 2008)
    NAFCU members that participated in Wednesday's webcast learned of a new loss mitigation option that credit unions servicing Fannie Mae loans can use to help struggling members stay in their homes and avoid foreclosure.
  • NeighborWorks foreclosure prevention work noted (March 27, 2008)
    NCUA Board Member Gigi Hyland on Tuesday highlighted the efforts of NeighborWorks America in helping to stem the tide of mortgage foreclosures and detailed how this public-private enterprise allocates funds.
  • New home sales data show rebound far off (March 27, 2008)
    Those hoping for signs of a possible housing recovery in February's new home sales data were disappointed Wednesday, with the U.S. Census Bureau reporting the fourth consecutive monthly sales decline for new homes.
  • OFHEO to keep conforming limit at $417,000 (March 27, 2008)
    The Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight plans to keep the $417,000 conforming loan limit in place for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac until home prices recover from previous declines, the agency said Wednesday.
  • Paulson notes FHA reform, Bear Stearns sale (March 27, 2008)
    Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson yesterday called anew for Federal Housing Administration reform legislation that he said could enable that agency to help as many as 250,000 more homeowners experiencing loan troubles.
  • 2 barred from financial institution service (March 26, 2008)
    NCUA recently published prohibition orders barring two persons from participating in the affairs of any federally insured financial institution.
  • Fed reports on 2006 check usage (March 26, 2008)
    Nearly 50 percent of all checks written in 2006 were consumer-to-business checks, according to a Federal Reserve study involving data from nine large commercial banks that accounted for about 40 percent of all checks processed in the U.S. that year.
  • NAFCU/Fannie Mae webcast today (March 26, 2008)
    There is still time for NAFCU members to sign up for today's free, Fannie Mae-sponsored webcast on what credit unions can do to help members avoid mortgage foreclosure.
  • CUs urged to give input on SBA lender oversight (March 25, 2008)
    NAFCU is encouraging its members to participate in a series of eight public comment meetings slated by the Small Business Administration to gather more input on a proposed regulatory framework for lender oversight and credit risk management.
  • Existing homes see unexpected sales boost (March 25, 2008)
    February's unexpected 2.9 percent boost in existing home sales is the first monthly increase since July, but NAFCU still believes that a turnaround in the housing market is unlikely before the second half of the year.
  • FHLBs’ MBS authority doubled for 2 years (March 25, 2008)
    The Federal Housing Finance Board for the next two years will allow the Federal Home Loan Banks to purchase more mortgage-backed securities issued or backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to help inject more liquidity into the mortgage market.
  • IRS ‘Super Saturday’ targets stimulus payments (March 25, 2008)
    The IRS and its partners will be working across the nation on March 29, "Super Saturday," to help retirees, veterans and low-income workers who don't normally have to file a tax return ensure they get their 2008 stimulus payments.
  • NAFCU asks another 30 days on merger ANPR (March 25, 2008)
    The breadth and complexity of NCUA's advance notice of proposed rulemaking on credit union mergers and conversions has moved NAFCU to seek a second 30-day extension, to May 31, of the comment deadline set by NCUA.
  • Comments sought on flood insurance guidance (March 24, 2008)
    NCUA, the federal bank and thrift regulators and the Farm Credit Administration have proposed a revised interagency guidance document on lenders' federal flood insurance requirements, and comments are due May 20.
  • Fannie Mae proposes valuation ‘protection code’ (March 24, 2008)
    Fannie Mae has proposed a home valuation protection code that would set requirements for appraisals on single-family mortgages originated on or after Jan. 1, 2009, and sold to Fannie Mae.
  • Senators seek ouster of HUD secretary (March 24, 2008)
    Senate Banking Chairman Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Patty Murray, D-Wash., on Friday urged the president to require the resignation of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson.
  • Treasury to offer $100 minimums on securities (March 24, 2008)
    The Treasury Department plans next month to begin auctions of Treasury marketable securities in minimum and multiple amounts of $100, a move aimed at expanding savings opportunities for investors, Treasury said.
  • CU mortgage lending key to subprime response (March 21, 2008)
    NCUA Vice Chairman Rodney Hood used two recent speaking appearances to tout the benefits of credit union mortgage lending, stating that such activity is instrumental to strengthening underserved communities and solving current economic woes.
  • Frank floats ‘consolidation’ in reg reform remarks (March 21, 2008)
    Regulatory reform to "consolidate the duplicative regulatory structure" for the financial services industry is one policy option that should be considered in efforts to stabilize the housing market and address the economic downturn, Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., said Thursday.
  • NAR submits application for own FCU (March 21, 2008)
    The National Association of Realtors has applied to charter a federal credit union, and an NCUA spokesman says the agency has begun its initial 30-day review of the application, a trade report said.
  • Prohibition addressed in proposed IRPS (March 21, 2008)
    A little-noticed section of the Federal Credit Union Act on prohibitions from service in a federally insured credit union is being addressed in NCUA proposed Interpretive Ruling and Policy Statement 08-1, released by the NCUA Board Thursday.
  • Fannie, Freddie to boost mortgage liquidity (March 20, 2008)
    Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be able to inject up to $200 billion into the mortgage market as the result of an easing in the entities' capital requirements Wednesday, according to their federal regulator.
  • FFIEC revises business continuity booklet (March 20, 2008)
    Updated guidance to help examiners, financial institutions and technology service providers identify business continuity risks and evaluate controls and risk management practices was issued Wednesday by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council.
  • Financial literacy council seeks input (March 20, 2008)
    The President's Advisory Council on Financial Literacy is asking the public for input on how to improve financial literacy among youth, in the workplace, in underserved markets and more, and comments are due May 23.
  • NCUA Board meets today on guidance document (March 20, 2008)
    The NCUA Board today is expected to release for comment a proposed interpretive ruling and policy statement dealing with prohibitions from service in federally insured credit unions arising from a person's criminal activity.
  • Becker urges anew against interchange fee bill (March 19, 2008)
    Interchange fees paid by Hannaford Brothers Supermarkets will protect the store chain from any losses that may arise in relation to a data breach that compromised some 4.2 million credit and payment cards, NAFCU said yesterday.
  • Fed action spurs comments on reg reform (March 19, 2008)
    The Federal Reserve's recent move to give investment banks access to the discount window is the backdrop for an American Banker article that also cites speculation about one U.S. regulator for credit unions, banks, thrifts and investment firms.
  • Hearing set April 9 on housing bill (March 19, 2008)
    A mortgage rescue bill unveiled last week by Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., and Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., will be taken up in a hearing April 9 by the House Financial Services Committee, which Frank chairs.
  • HUD plans online RESPA complaint form (March 19, 2008)
    An online form where consumers and mortgage settlement service providers can post complaints about abusive settlement practices is in the works at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
  • Lawmakers ask Fed help for student loan market (March 19, 2008)
    Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., and 31 other House members are urging the Federal Reserve to ensure liquidity for all types of student loan originators as more and more providers drop out of the market.
  • More FOMC rate cuts likely, economist says (March 19, 2008)
    The Federal Open Market Committee's 75-basis-point cut in the federal funds target rate isn't likely to be the last if incoming data over the near term show continued weakness, NAFCU Staff Economist Katrin O'Connor said.
  • NAFCU/Fannie webcast notes mortgage workouts (March 19, 2008)
    NAFCU members can learn techniques for helping their members who may be struggling to keep up with their mortgages during a free March 26 webcast sponsored by Fannie Mae.
  • CURIA gets another cosponsor (March 18, 2008)
    The Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act now has 147 cosponsors with the addition of Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md, who signed on March 14 lending even more support to the measure.
  • IRS has online calculator for stimulus payments (March 18, 2008)
    IRS has posted an online calculator for people to estimate how much of a stimulus payment they can expect under the 2008 Economic Stimulus Act.
  • Most CUs not planning to revise loan rates (March 18, 2008)
    Some 81 percent of credit unions in NAFCU's March Flash survey said they don't think they will be able to improve pricing on higher-balance mortgages in response to increased conforming loan limits at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
  • Senate work to resume on bankruptcy bills (March 18, 2008)
    A mark-up slated on two mortgage bankruptcy bills was postponed last week by the Senate Judiciary Committee, but work is expected to resume soon after lawmakers return from their spring break March 31, NAFCU lobbyists said Monday.
  • CPI data leave room for rate cuts (March 17, 2008)
    The zero growth reported for the consumer price index in February gives the Federal Open Market Committee more room to cut rates aggressively in Tuesday's policy-setting session.
  • Dodd pressing ‘hope for homeowners’ bill (March 17, 2008)
    Senate Banking Chairman Chris Dodd, D-Conn., was joined by his House counterpart last week during a press conference detailing Dodd's mortgage foreclosure prevention package, the HOPE for Homeowners Act of 2008.
  • Forbes taken to task for Eakes profile (March 17, 2008)
    An article published online by Columbia Journalism Review takes Forbes magazine to task for its recent profile of Martin Eakes, president of the Center for Responsible Lending in North Carolina.
  • Frank notes ‘dwindling’ interest in CRA, for now (March 17, 2008)
    House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., on Friday acknowledged some push-back on the idea of expanding the Community Reinvestment Act to credit unions, a Hill report said.
  • Proposed RESPA revisions out for comment (March 17, 2008)
    A 96-page proposal to revise disclosure requirements under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act was published in Friday's Federal Register with a deadline for public comments of May 13.
  • Fazio named NCUA’s deputy executive director (March 14, 2008)
    Larry Fazio has been selected as NCUA's deputy executive director and will assist Executive Director Len Skiles in managing the agency's daily operation.
  • Frank unveils mortgage rescue plan (March 14, 2008)
    A mortgage and housing "rescue" proposal that would require write-downs by lenders prior to federally guaranteed refinancings was released Thursday by House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass.
  • NAFCU notes credit card bills’ impact on CUs (March 14, 2008)
    NAFCU lobbyists said credit-card bills currently in the House and Senate raise several concerns for credit unions that NAFCU will be working to address as the measures move through these still-early stages of the legislative process.
  • NCUA Board to meet on guidance document (March 14, 2008)
    Proposed guidance addressing prohibitions from credit union service is the one item on the NCUA Board's March 20 open meeting agenda.
  • New look $5 bill now in circulation (March 14, 2008)
    Federal Reserve banks on Thursday began distributing the newly redesigned U.S. $5 notes to customer depository institutions, so it won't be long before the new bills reach businesses and consumers.
  • Paulson addresses credit markets, blueprint (March 14, 2008)
    Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, while unveiling recommendations for preventing another subprime and credit crisis, said a financial services regulatory "blueprint" will be released in coming weeks.
  • Retail data show consumers cutting back (March 14, 2008)
    February's unexpected decline in retail sales confirms that consumers are limiting much of their spending on non-essentials, NAFCU Staff Economist Katrin O'Connor said yesterday.
  • Credit-card hearing includes consumers (March 13, 2008)
    A House subcommittee hearing today on a credit-card practices bill includes two panels of witnesses, the first consisting of card users and the second including legal and economic experts and card industry representatives.
  • Frank says CRA work expected in 2009 (March 13, 2008)
    The House Financial Service Committee's work on the Community Reinvestment Act may be on hold until next year, according to remarks Wednesday by panel Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., who also discussed efforts to slow mortgage foreclosures.
  • Jackson reiterates RESPA proposal out soon (March 13, 2008)
    Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson yesterday told the Senate Banking Committee that proposed revisions of Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act rules were expected to be released at any time.
  • NAFCU Awards deadline nears (March 13, 2008)
    Just a few days remain until the March 17 deadline for NAFCU members to enter this year's 2008 Annual Awards and Marketing Awards competitions.
  • Volunteers Conference set for May in Florida (March 13, 2008)
    Credit union volunteers will learn about changing economic trends, the latest compliance issues and leadership matters when they attend NAFCU's Volunteers Conference this May in Marco Island, Fla.
  • Fed sets April 8 forum on credit card issues (March 12, 2008)
    A forum involving card industry and other groups will be hosted April 8 by the Federal Reserve Board on credit-card market issues and trends, Fed Board Gov. Randall Kroszner told a gathering of bankers Tuesday in Washington.
  • HOEPA input due Friday to NAFCU (March 12, 2008)
    Members have until Friday to give NAFCU their input to the association's official comment on a Federal Reserve Board proposal addressing unfair and deceptive acts or practices in mortgage lending.
  • Hood named a Young Global Leader (March 12, 2008)
    NCUA Vice Chairman Rodney Hood has been named a 2008 Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, an international not-for-profit organization incorporated in Switzerland to promote social and economic development.
  • HUD readying new RESPA proposal (March 12, 2008)
    A new proposed rule to revise home loan disclosures under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act is slated for release soon, according to testimony given Tuesday by HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson before the House Financial Services Committee.
  • Mortgage deduction proposed for non-itemizers (March 12, 2008)
    An amendment sought by Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., to a fiscal 2009 budget resolution would permit homeowners who do not itemize on their federal tax returns to take a standard deduction for property taxes.
  • Bankruptcy bills up for mark-up (March 11, 2008)
    The Senate Judiciary Committee holds a mark-up Thursday on two mortgage bankruptcy bills, one of which had been slated earlier for inclusion in a Senate housing stimulus bill that has yet to move.
  • Free stimulus payment brochure online (March 11, 2008)
    NAFCU President Fred Becker said a free NAFCU brochure addressing the 2008 stimulus payments, or rebates, is available now to help credit unions ensure their members have the information they need to get the payments.
  • McCain campaign notes support for CU exemption (March 11, 2008)
    Sen. John McCain's senior campaign advisers have assured NAFCU that the presumptive Republican presidential nominee does not favor taxing credit unions.
  • NAFCU opposes regulating interchange fees (March 11, 2008)
    A bill offered in the House last week that effectively would regulate credit card interchange fees would threaten card issuers' ability to recover business costs and worsen the credit squeeze, NAFCU President Fred Becker said Monday.
  • New $5 to be released Thursday (March 11, 2008)
    Treasury and Federal Reserve officials on Thursday will hold a press conference to introduce the redesigned U.S. $5 note, which is being released into circulation that day at Federal Reserve banks across the country.
  • CURIA gets another cosponsor boost (March 10, 2008)
    Reps. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J., and Joe Wilson, R-S.C., signed on March 6 as cosponsors for H.R. 1537, the Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act-the same day the House Financial Services Committee held a hearing to address regulatory relief for credit unions.
  • CUs report revolving, non-revolving credit declines (March 10, 2008)
    The Federal Reserve reported Friday that credit union consumer credit fell 0.7 percent on a non-seasonally adjusted basis in January, a slightly sharper decline than the 0.2 percent decrease felt by depository institutions overall.
  • Maloney sets hearing on credit-card bill (March 10, 2008)
    A hearing on a bill setting consumer protections for credit-card users is set for Thursday in the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions, chaired by Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y.
  • Payroll data suggest challenges ahead for CUs (March 10, 2008)
    Credit unions serving members in the construction, manufacturing, retail trade and professional/business sectors are likely to have a tougher time with growth over the near term, with February's job losses in those employment areas indicating considerable weakness.
  • CUs told Senate CURIA bill requires face time (March 7, 2008)
    Credit unions wishing to win Senate passage of the Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act will need to visit with key senators and convince them how important the bill is, Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., said yesterday.
  • NAFCU urges Congress on CU reg relief (March 7, 2008)
    NAFCU At-large Director Mike Lussier on Thursday urged Congress to enact much-needed regulatory relief for credit unions, including the easing of outmoded regulatory restrictions and a new capital system that recognizes risks as appropriate to individual credit unions.
  • OFHEO announces higher GSE loan limits (March 7, 2008)
    The regulator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced Thursday that higher conforming loan limits are now in effect until the end of 2008, including its increase of the single-family home loan limit to $729,750.
  • Risk-based capital, underserved issues highlighted (March 7, 2008)
    NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson, in yesterday's House Financial Services Committee hearing on credit union regulatory relief, said that instituting a risk-based system for capital requirements at credit unions is her top priority as a regulator.
  • 2 banking trades on CU relief hearing list (March 6, 2008)
    NCUA and credit union trades, including NAFCU, make up the first panel of witnesses for today's House Financial Services Committee hearing on credit union regulatory relief issues-and two banking trade representatives make up the second.
  • Frank to introduce subprime refinance bill (March 6, 2008)
    A bill allowing the federal government to refinance subprime mortgage loans nearing foreclosure is expected to be offered within the next week by House Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, D-Mass., reports said.
  • Kanjorski urges CU action on stimulus payments (March 6, 2008)
    Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., yesterday urged credit unions to help ensure their members who receive Social Security, veterans' and certain other federal benefits payments know they need to file a 2007 tax return to get their 2008 stimulus payments.
  • Landrieu, Lieberman to offer Senate CURIA (March 6, 2008)
    NAFCU President Fred Becker lauded Sens. Mary Landrieu, D-La., and Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., for their statement that they will offer a Senate version of H.R. 1537, the Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act.
  • NAFCU urges improved CDFI certification (March 6, 2008)
    Improvements in the community development financial institutions certification process are urged in a NAFCU comment letter sent Wednesday to Treasury's CDFI Fund.
  • Webcast details common BSA compliance errors (March 6, 2008)
    Over 200 credit unions heard about recent developments in Bank Secrecy Act compliance-plus the top five areas where examiners are finding errors in BSA programs-during a NAFCU webcast Wednesday.
  • Hyland, Hood speak to CU conference (March 5, 2008)
    NCUA Board Member Gigi Hyland on Tuesday noted key points of last week's NCUA Outreach Task Force report, including proposed data collection and the disclosure of senior executive salary contemplated in the report recommendations.
  • Johnson: CUs will weather mortgage market woes (March 5, 2008)
    Federally insured credit unions are seeing rising real estate loan delinquencies and foreclosures, but they remain strong and are well-positioned to weather the current economic downturn, NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson told lawmakers Tuesday.
  • NAFCU writes in opposition to data collection (March 5, 2008)
    NAFCU on Tuesday formally lodged opposition to data-collection recommendations of NCUA's Outreach Task Force, noting that credit union charters, size and services vary so much as to severely challenge any effort to build meaningful, comparative data on how credit unions serve their members.
  • Vehicle-loan demand to remain weak for now (March 5, 2008)
    Credit unions should prepare themselves for below potential auto-lending growth over the near term, with vehicle sales expected to remain weak until the second half of the year, NAFCU Staff Economist Katrin O'Connor said.
  • GAO reports on account fees, disclosures (March 4, 2008)
    NCUA and other member agencies of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council will review their Truth in Savings Act exam procedures in response to GAO findings from a review of account fees and disclosures, GAO said in a report released Monday.
  • IRS begins notifying on stimulus payments (March 4, 2008)
    The first of two notices slated this tax season on the 2008 economic stimulus payments are going out this week, IRS said in releases late last week.
  • Johnson highlights sound mortgage habits (March 4, 2008)
    NCUA Chairman JoAnn Johnson marked Monday's beginning of National Consumer Protection Week by releasing a statement highlighting important factors consumers should consider when weighing their mortgage options.
  • Kanjorski, Royce introduce new CU bill (March 4, 2008)
    CURIA's chief sponsor, Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., on Monday released a new credit union regulatory relief bill yesterday, dubbing it the Credit Union Regulatory Relief Act of 2008 and introducing it with Rep. Ed Royce of California the chief Republican cosponsor.
  • Paulson touts HOPE NOW progress (March 4, 2008)
    The HOPE NOW alliance has helped over 1 million struggling homeowners obtain either a loan modification or repayment plan, Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said Monday.
  • Fed slates work on unfair credit card practices (March 3, 2008)
    The Federal Reserve Board expects to issue a proposed rule this spring addressing unfair and deceptive acts or practices by credit card issuers, Fed Board Chairman Ben Bernanke told lawmakers last week.
  • Need for CURIA, its impact eyed, Kanjorski says (March 3, 2008)
    A couple issues to be addressed in Thursday's hearing on credit union regulatory relief will be the need for H.R. 1537, the Credit Union Regulatory Improvements Act, and its potential impact on credit unions and their members, Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., said in a statement Friday.
  • Senate Banking sets oversight, GSE hearings (March 3, 2008)
    Hearings on the state of the financial services industry and on reform of the housing government-sponsored enterprises are on tap this week in the Senate Banking Committee, chaired by Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn.
  • Senators want mortgage bankruptcy language (March 3, 2008)
    Talk resumes in the Senate this week on a housing stimulus bill which includes a mortgage bankruptcy provision viewed by NAFCU as a workable compromise over the original language.