USDA Announces Details of Assistance for Farmers Impacted by Trade Damage

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue on Monday announced details of actions the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will take to assist farmers in response to trade damage from unjustified retaliation by foreign nations.

President Trump directed Perdue to craft a short-term relief strategy to protect agricultural producers while the Administration works on free, fair and reciprocal trade deals to open more markets in the long run to help American farmers compete globally. USDA will authorize up to $12 billion in programs, consistent with its World Trade Organization obligations.

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Dakota Wesleyan University Set to Launch Trust Management Programs

Dakota Wesleyan University (DWU)  in Mitchell, S.D., has heard from various financial institutions, including experts in the trust management sector, about the crucial void in trained professionals in the trust management field. DWU consulted with industry leaders regarding this need and will now offer the first-ever trust management certification in the United States. 

“The decision for DWU to begin offering this program came after several major banking and financial institutions identified the need for further education and tailored training in the trust management job market,” said Dr. Amy Novak, DWU president.

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Learn About FBI's 'Imminent Threat' Warning

The FBI recently released an alert regarding “Unlimited Operation” attacks increasing against U.S. financial institutions. The Graduate School of Banking of Wisconsin-Madison is offering the hot-topic online seminar "FBI Warns of 'Imminent Threat' to U.S. ATMs" on Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 10 a.m. CDT. 

Since 2016, these types of attacks have cost the U.S. 2.5 million in losses by leveraging stolen card data against an institution whose ATM systems have been compromised. The settings on these systems are altered to bypass the safety controls that limit cash withdrawals.

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Police Warn of Fake $100 Bills in Huron

Huron Police are warning businesses to be on the lookout for fake $100 bills. 

Several weeks ago, the Huron Police Department (HPD) received reports that counterfeit bills were being circulated at local businesses. HPD detectives spent several hours talking to witnesses, interrogating suspects and watching surveillance video, which resulted in an arrest in connection with those reported incidents. The HPD is once again receiving reports of counterfeit $100 bills being passed in town at local businesses.

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SDBA to Host Compliance Alliance Show-and-Tell Session

Based on the needs of community bankers, Compliance Alliance provides its members an all-inclusive set of bank compliance tools and services that help them stay up-to-date with consumer and regulatory requirements. Compliance Alliance is the only banking industry compliance resource that is owned, operated and managed by 30 state bankers associations, including the South Dakota Bankers Association.

The SDBA is hosting a Compliance Alliance show-and-tell session on Thursday, Aug. 23, for those banks interested in viewing the tools and services provided by Compliance Alliance. The session will be held from 1 to 2:30 p.m. at Doral Centre, 101 W. 69th Street in Sioux Falls.

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Website Highlights Banks' Support for America's Farmers and Ranchers

America’s banks provide much-needed credit to America’s farmers and ranchers in the form of loans, lines of credit and other financial products and services. In 2017, the industry had $181 billion in outstanding agricultural loans that support the nation’s farmers from the coasts to the heartland, according to statistics from the new America’s Banks website. “Access to reliable credit is key in any successful business,” remarked one Iowa famer in a video on the site. “In farming, with its ups and downs, we rely on our local bank to keep our operation successful." 

To learn more, visit the newly reimagined America’s Banks website, aba.com/AmericasBanks. Bankers are encouraged to share the website, facts and figures, stories and videos with their lawmakers and customers and are invited, when sharing on social media, to use the hashtag #AmericasBanks

FinCEN Extends Beneficial Ownership Relief for CD Rollovers, Loan Renewals

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has extended for 30 additional days its temporary suspension of the beneficial ownership requirements for certificate of deposit rollovers and loans that renew automatically. The temporary suspension will now expire on Sept. 8. FinCEN is working to finalize a more permanent solution in response to concerns raised by ABA and others in the banking industry. 

As part of the ongoing effort to help banks comply with the customer due diligence rule--which took effect May 11--FinCEN has created an informational webpage that pulls together various documents on the rule.

SBA to Hold Rural Lending Event in Pierre

The U.S. Small Business Administration and U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development will present  a panel on rural small business lending and technical assistance on Wednesday, Aug. 8, in Pierre. 

The audience will learn about assistance and loans offered by the SBA, USDA Rural Development, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, U.S. Economic Development Administration, Governor’s Office Economic Development and representatives of banking associations that can assist entrepreneurs start or grow a business. The session will also provide valuable information for lenders wanting to assist rural entrepreneurs. 

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Treasury Recommends Pro-Innovation Updates to Fintech Regulation

The Treasury Department on Tuesday issued a long-awaited report recommending changes to laws and regulations affecting non-bank financial providers and the broader fintech environment. The fourth in a series of reports issued in response to President Trump’s executive order on core principles for financial regulation, this report includes several recommendations long advocated by ABA as part of its efforts to enhance financial innovation.

“We are encouraged to see that the Treasury Department’s fintech report recognizes the innovative technologies banks have already deployed and will continue to develop, both on their own and in partnership with others,” said ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols. “We continue to review the recommendations in the report, but we appreciate that many of the ideas are consistent with the principles set forth in the white paper ABA sent to Treasury earlier this year.”

Reflecting the ongoing evolution of technology, Treasury specifically recommended:

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House Passes ABA-Backed Flood Insurance Extension

The House yesterday passed an ABA-supported measure extending the National Flood Insurance Program through Nov. 30, providing certainty for lenders and borrowers during this year’s hurricane season. Following the 366-to-52 vote, the Senate must now pass the measure to ensure authorization for the NFIP does not expire as scheduled on July 31.

ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols welcomed the House’s action. “If there is a lapse, many loan closings in high-risk areas will be delayed or otherwise complicated, resulting in additional costs and borrower frustrations,” Nichols commented. He added that “ABA strongly supports both a long-term reauthorization of the program and necessary reforms that will make the NFIP more sustainable, while also balancing concerns over availability and affordability.”

A recent ABA Banking Journal article provided tips for bankers on preparing for a possible lapse in NFIP authorization. Read the article

Emergency Farm Aid to Ease Concerns Over Trade Disputes

The Trump administration said Tuesday it would extend $12 billion in emergency aid to farmers amid signs the U.S. agricultural sector is beginning to feel the impact of President Donald Trump’s escalating trade disputes with major U.S. trading partners.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said the U.S. government would provide incremental payments to support prices of some of the hardest-hit commodities, including soybeans, sorghum, cotton, corn, wheat and pork, according to a story by The Wall Street Journal.

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Learn How to Take Advantage of New Reciprocal Deposit Legislation

Thanks to the newly-signed regulatory relief bill, most reciprocal deposits are no longer brokered. This comes as banks face intense and increasing competition for deposits.

Join Promontory Interfinancial Network—the nation’s leading provider and inventor of reciprocal deposit placement services—for a free webinar that outlines key provisions of the new law and the impact ICS®, or Insured Cash Sweep®, and CDARS® can have on banks’ balance sheets. The webinar will also cover how banks can use ICS and CDARS to capitalize on the opportunities at hand; presenters will discuss cost-effective ways to use the services to attract high-value relationships (even as deposit competition intensifies) and to lock-in more low-cost funding (even as interest rates continue to rise).

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SDBA Bank Technology Conference Registration Now Open

Technology Graphic

The role of an IT professional is ever-changing, especially in today’s environment. The SDBA Bank Technology Conference set for Sept. 11-12 in Sioux Falls is designed to provide support as you keep on top of technology trends and scams, navigate the business of banking, and build and sustain your bank’s technology strategy. This conference will provide you with an opportunity to learn from industry experts, network with other IT colleagues, and visit with exhibitors to see and experience the latest in products and services.

Sessions will cover cybersecurity, website design, incident response plans, trends and developments, preparing for your next exam, recruitment and retention of IT personnel and much more. Presenters include Lee Wetherington, who will provide the bottom line on fintechs, bigtechs, branches, blockchain and more and how to navigate the most strategically important challenges and opportunities ahead and Dave DeFazio, who will talk about the Amazon Prime effect and surviving in the new subscription society. See the full agendaRegister to attend.

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ABA Wins One-Year Extension on Regional Bank Living Will Deadline

As they implement S. 2155, the Federal Reserve and the FDIC said on Monday that they are beginning the process of determining which financial firms with assets of less than $250 billion will be subject to the requirement to submit resolution plans, also known as living wills. Under S. 2155, the Federal Reserve is no longer required to impose the living will process on bank holding companies with less than $100 billion during the first 18 months following the bill’s passage. After the 18-month period, or sooner at the discretion of the Fed, the requirement ends for bank holding companies with assets below $250 billion.

As recommended by ABA in a February comment letter, the agencies also extended the deadline for 14 U.S. regional banking companies to submit their resolution plans. Originally due by the end of 2018, living wills will be due by Dec. 31, 2019, in order to allow more time for the agencies to provide feedback on their last round of resolution plans. ABA has urged--and Fed Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles has signaled that he wants to pursue--a biennial rather than annual living will process.

The 14 companies receiving the extension are Ally Financial, American Express, BB&T Corporation, Capital One Financial, Citizens Financial, Fifth Third Bancorp, Huntington Bancshares, KeyCorp, M&T Bank, Northern Trust, Regions Financial, SunTrust Banks, PNC Financial Services Group, and U.S. Bancorp. Last week, the Fed and FDIC also sought public comment on living will guidance for the largest U.S. financial institutions. Read moreRead ABA's comment letter. For more information, contact ABA's Hu Benton

Senate Passes Farm Bill with Flood Insurance Extension

By a bipartisan 86-11, the Senate last Thursday passed its version the 2018 Farm Bill. The vote sets up a conference between the Senate version and the recently passed House version where lawmakers will address differences in the two bills on nutritional assistance, farm subsidy caps and conservation initiatives.

ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols welcomed the bill's passage. "The reauthorization of this bill will provide critical risk management tools and stability for our nation’s farmers and ranchers and the 2,000 farm banks that serve them every day," he said. "We are particularly pleased that banks and their customers will continue to have access to crop insurance and USDA guaranteed loan programs. Ag bankers use these programs to make loans and manage risk, so they can serve the needs of their customers even in down times."

The bill also included a six-month extension of the National Flood Insurance Program, which is set to expire on July 31. "While work remains to achieve long-term reauthorization and reform of the NFIP, it is essential for borrowers across the nation that the program not lapse," Nichols said. 

Coalition Urges Senate to Protect Crop Insurance

A coalition of more than 600 agricultural banking and insurance organizations--including ABA--and other ag industry constituents signed onto a letter to members of the Senate urging them to oppose any harmful amendments in the 2018 Farm Bill that would increase the cost of, reduce or limit participation in, or harm private sector delivery of crop insurance. With the House’s passage last week of its version of the Farm Bill, the Senate must now pass its version before the two bills can be reconciled. 

The groups underscored the importance of crop insurance to America’s farmers and ranchers, noting that without it, many could not qualify for the operating loans they require. In addition, crop insurance currently provides a rapid response solution to natural disasters, provides for environmental benefits, protects jobs both on and off the farm, and is available to all types and sizes of producers nationwide. 

“Crop insurance is food and fiber security insurance, and food and fiber security is national security,” the groups said. “Given the importance of crop insurance, [we] urge you to support America’s farmers, ranchers, rural economies and national security by opposing amendments that would harm crop insurance.” Read the letter

Registration Open for SDBA Women in Banking Conference

Lead Strong: Women in Banking

Registration is now open for Lead Strong: Women in Banking set for Oct. 2, 2018, at the Hilton Garden Inn South in Sioux Falls. The event is the SDBA's first one-day conference for women in banking. 

LEAD STRONG: Women in Banking is designed to encourage, support and inspire women to succeed in the workplace. This event will benefit all levels of staff interested in the enhancement and career growth of women in South Dakota banking. 

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Podcast: How Emerging Community Bank Leaders Are Building Their Careers

A lawyer and a professional baseball player walk into a bank.... No, it’s not a joke -- it’s the latest episode of the ABA Banking Journal Podcast. Emily Gray graduated from law school, and Blake Taylor began his working life as a minor-league baseball player, but both of them ended up building successful careers in community banking. Gray is now senior credit officer at Hardin County Bank, Savannah, Tenn., and Taylor is an SVP and commercial real estate lender at Southern First Bank in Columbia, S.C.

They are chair and vice chair, respectively, of ABA’s Emerging Leaders Advisory Board, and on the podcast they discuss how rising leaders in banking can develop their careers and position themselves to succeed. One important skill, for example, is “horizontal leadership” (compared with top-down leadership). “You’ve got to be able to lead horizontally with your peers,” says Gray. “A lot of the time, and especially in community banks, you have so many people who wear so many different hats that the hierarchy isn’t there as much as in a larger institution.”

Both Gray and Taylor speak frankly about the challenges facing ambitious community bankers as industry consolidation continues. “There’s only a handful of those [C-suite] opportunities,” says Taylor. “What’s going to set me apart?” But Gray adds that she’s optimistic: “I don’t think there’s ever been a better time to be a young banker.” Both veterans of young bankers’ programs in their own states, they also discuss the roles of the state bankers associations in developing the next generation of executive banking talent. Listen to this episode.

Do you use podcast apps to listen? You can find the ABA Banking Journal Podcast on Apple PodcastsGoogle PlayPocket CastsStitcher and Spotify, as well as in the Daily Newsbytes email every Friday.

Trump to Nominate Kathy Kraninger to Lead CFPB

President Trump will nominate Kathy Kraninger, a top aide at the Office of Management and Budget, as director of the CFPB, the White House confirmed Saturday. Kraninger is an associate director at OMB responsible for financial regulatory agency budgets and previously served as Senate staff on Capitol Hill and at the Department of Homeland Security.

Upon confirmation, Kraninger would replace CFPB Acting Director Mick Mulvaney, who is also the confirmed director of OMB. Kraninger’s nomination comes at a key moment for the CFPB; under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act, Mulvaney’s stint as acting director would have expired this month, but when a permanent replacement is nominated, the clock resets, allowing Mulvaney to remain as acting director until Kraninger is confirmed.

ABA President and CEO Rob Nichols congratulated Kraninger on her nomination. “Her experience at OMB alongside Acting CFPB Director Mick Mulvaney, along with her years of work on Capitol Hill and in the executive branch, would serve her well in this important position,” he said. “We trust she shares our interest in ensuring consumers have access to the financial products they want and need, while maintaining the protections they deserve.” 

ABA Foundation Releases Free Guide to Partnerships that Protect Senior Customers

To mark World Elder Abuse Awareness Day on Friday, the ABA Foundation is this week releasing a free new guide to help bankers combat financial exploitation of seniors. Seniors currently lose an estimated $2.9 billion per year to financial abuse, and with a growing number of baby boomers retiring, scams targeting the elderly are growing.

The new guide provides an overview of the state of financial exploitation; addresses top scams currently in play; examines what banks can do, including how to report suspected fraud; and outlines the distinct roles of law enforcement agencies and adult protective services and how to partner with them. It also includes several sample resources, including introduction letters to law enforcement, APS, senior-focused nonprofits and senior living facilities.

The guide is part of a broader set of ABA Foundation resources to help bankers protect their senior customers. Through aba.com/seniors, bankers can register for FinEdLink, a free platform that connects participating banks with senior-focused community groups and agencies that would like a banker-led presentation on senior financial safety.