Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee (“HFSC”) Patrick McHenry (R-NC) offered to cooperate with new Chair Maxine Waters on a list of priorities affecting the U.S. financial system.
According to Mr. McHenry, the list of hearing topics concern areas that are critical to ensuring the “strength and stability of the U.S. financial system and the global competitiveness of American job creators.” The list includes:
- Britain’s withdrawal from the European Union and its effects on the U.S. economy and the international financial system;
- the Export-Import Bank and “its impact on the global competitiveness of U.S. companies and U.S. job creation”;
- cybersecurity within the financial space, to evaluate the “readiness” of the financial sector and the ability of the U.S. government to protect digital consumer accounts against fraud, misuse and improper access;
- China’s “debt trap” and the implications of China’s lending decisions in relation to the IMF, the World Bank and global systemic risk;
- foreign investment and venture capital in the global economy, to assess how the U.S. Treasury Department is implementing the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act of 2018;
- scheduled reductions to the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet, specifically in relation to unwinding crisis-era asset purchases;
- the National Flood Insurance Program (“NFIP”), to examine proposed reforms that could impact the “affordability, availability and long-term solvency of the NFIP”;
- the modernization of the Bank Secrecy Act and Anti-Money Laundering regulatory regime to inspect the duplicative nature of the current rules;
- the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act, to provide oversight of the program, better comprehend the private insurance market, and build consensus before the program expires;
- the regulation of FinTech; and
- the oversight of the Financial Accounting Standards Board and its Current Expected Credit Loss Accounting Standard.
Mr. McHenry noted that the list is not exclusive, but that it gives the HFSC an opportunity to better understand the “complex legislative landscape we will face this Congress.”
Lofchie Comment: The list contains a number of important big-picture concerns. It is not a list, however, likely to generate much political or press excitement. In this environment, it is an open question whether Chair Waters will take up any of the items on Representative McHenry’s list.