Central Banks

Wednesday, January 29, 2020 - 15:21


WASHINGTON (MNI) - The following is the portion of a transcript from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's press conference after the FOMC meeting Wednesday:

Q: Do you support Governor Brainard's community activism reform and is this something we could see the Fed formally propose at some point?

A: So let me say that I think this is a good time to do -- to update CRA really, in a way that is a win-win both for the intended beneficiaries low and moderate income communities and also for banks that would like to have more certainty about what does and doesn't qualify and that sort of thing. The law can be both more effective and more efficient as it comes down to it and we think this is a good way -- and it's just also a good time to take on board the way the delivery of banking services has changed through technology and demographic change as well. We worked very hard to try to get on the same page with the other two agencies. We think that an inter-agency final rule together would be the best outcome. We're sorry that we haven't been able to get there and we still hold out some hope that we will be able to. We spent a lot of time on research and analysis and looking at meaningful reform. You see Governor Brainard's recent speech presenting some of the thinking and analysis, and we haven't made decisions on what we'll do, or what we'll process. Our focus is entirely on trying to get to an agreement with the OCC really, so haven't made any decisions about what we'll do going forward. In terms of Governor Brainard led our oversight Committee over the activities for many years and I asked her to take the lead on CRA modernization, which is a high priority for us. I was comfortable with her speech and I'm comfortable with the work that we've done and with the Fed's position on this. As I said, we haven't chosen to bring a proposal forward, we haven't decided what to do going forward, and we're not going to comment on the other proposal, it's just not appropriate to do. It's not about us, it's not about our views, it's about the views of the interested parties.

--MNI Washington Bureau; +1 202 371 2121; email: brooke.migdon@marketnews.com


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