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No Bank Should be Too Big to Fail nor Too Big to Jail, ICBA

June 02, 2015, 07:07 AM
Filed Under: Banking News

The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) President and CEO Camden R. Fine sent a letter to Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry, FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg, Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Mary Jo White and Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Timothy Massad regarding five of the world’s largest banks recently pleading guilty to criminal charges related to manipulating foreign currency exchange rates.

The five banks, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Barclays, UBS and Royal Bank of Scotland, all pled guilty to criminal charges that they acted in concert to manipulate international interest rates and foreign currency exchange. Over the span of several years, these banks bilked billions of dollars from unsuspecting companies, international investors and individuals by altering rates in their favor.

In the letter, Fine said that this is not the first time these banks have had problems with the law. Both JP Morgan and Citibank have been held liable for mortgage securities fraud. JP Morgan has also been involved in ‘London Whale’ trading, the Robo-Signing scandal, electricity market manipulation, and municipal bond trading fraud. For UBS, this was the third criminal settlement in six years.

“If a large bank commits a crime and even if the bank has been subject to multiple violations of the law, all the bank receives is a fine and a slap on the wrist. There are no changes in the management or the board, and the bank continues functioning as if nothing has happened,” Fine said. “ICBA demands regulators adopt a consistent and fair enforcement policy that treats community banks and megabanks alike in these situations. No bank should be too big to fail nor too big to jail. There should not be one set of enforcement procedures for large, megabanks and another for the rest of the financial industry.”

To view the letter in its entirety, click here.
The Independent Community Bankers of America®, the nation’s voice for more than 6,000 community banks of all sizes and charter types, is dedicated exclusively to representing the interests of the community banking industry and its membership through effective advocacy, best-in-class education and high-quality products and services.

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