Treasury questions financial inclusion for the fintech industry

Today the U.S. Department of Treasury released a roadmap for regulating financial technology, defining this administration’s policy approach towards the rapidly growing industry. The report encouraged regulatory flexibility and calls for the end of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s payday rule. It also asks the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to reconsider whether CRA-like obligations are appropriate for the fintech industry.

Jesse Van Tol, CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, made the following statement:

“Coming out of the financial meltdown, we learned just how important it is to have a uniform financial framework that covers all financial institutions. This includes a new charter to address emerging financial technology companies. Today’s announcement recommends granting fintechs the extraordinary benefits of a national bank charter, including exemption from state interest rate caps, but questions whether a financial inclusion obligation should apply to them. I am concerned that without a level playing field, this industry will spur a race to the bottom in the banking industry. A CRA-like obligation must apply to fintechs, as it does to banks.”

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