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Inside Washington (05/26/2010)
* WASHINGTON (5/27/10)--A permanent increase in the deposit insurance limit is likely on the backburner, said American Banker (May 26). Some lawmakers hoped to address the limit--temporarily at $250,000 per account until 2013--in the regulatory reform bill the Senate passed May 20. Some financial observers say the limit should be permanent because the previous $100,000 limit had not been changed in 30 years and returning to that level could trigger a liquidity shock. Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) had introduced an amendment in the regulatory reform bill to make the increase permanent, but it failed. Some observers say the increase will be added by those working on the House and Senate reform bills. Financial institutions were granted the $250,000 limit under S. 896, "Helping Families Save Their Homes Act of 2009.” Credit unions also were granted coverage up to $250,000 per account, a move that the Credit Union National Association supported ... * WASHINGTON (5/27/10)--House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.) said Tuesday that forcing banks to divest their swap desks “goes too far.” Frank supports stopping banks from engaging in risky trading practices but opposes the spinoff plan--which was championed by Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln (R-Ark.) Frank supports the Volcker Rule--which aims to ban risky trading--and Frank’s support will increase its chances of being added to the final regulatory reform bill, which could be signed into law by July 4, said American Banker (May 26). Frank has said banks should be able to hedge their own risks ... * WASHINGTON (5/27/10)--The Obama administration Tuesday again pushed its proposal for a $30 billion fund to encourage small business lending (American Banker May 26). President Barack Obama, who proposed the fund, said in a speech earlier this week in the Rose Garden that the fund would target only small community and neighborhood banks and would help these institutions increase small business lending. The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) is also working to increase available credit to small businesses. CUNA supports legislation that would increase the cap on credit unions’ member business lending to 25% of assets from 12.25%. CUNA figures show the cap increase would bring $10 billion in new credit and create more than 100,000 new jobs ...


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