ICBA Press Release Banner 2020

House companion to Senate Durbin Amendment expansion introduced

Washington, D.C. (Sept. 20, 2022) — Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey issued the following statement on the House introduction of the Credit Card Competition Act.

“ICBA and the nation’s community banks strongly oppose the introduction of the controversial Credit Card Competition Act by Reps. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) and Lance Gooden (R-Texas), the House companion to ICBA-opposed legislation sponsored by Sens. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) and Dick Durbin (D-Ill.).

“Applying routing restrictions to credit card transactions would merely expand the Durbin Amendment’s government-orchestrated transfer of income from low-income households to the nation’s largest retailers, such as Amazon and Walmart. According to Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond data, large retail merchants have pocketed $106 billion in interchange fees funneled to them by the Durbin Amendment—violating their pledge to pass the windfall on to consumers.

“This anti-consumer government intervention would also end popular credit card rewards programs by preventing card companies from funding them, as the Durbin Amendment did to debit card rewards programs. And while the bill’s expanded mandates are designed to apply to banks with over $100 billion in assets, the measure would require all banks—including Main Street community banks—to subsidize the costly and burdensome changes it would impose on the payments system. This not only refutes the sponsors’ claims that their plan would help community banks, it also risks driving small issuers to exit the credit card business altogether—limiting access in local communities.

“Further, expanding the Durbin Amendment would hand over the security of the nation’s credit card system to merchants—which are not required to meet the same rigorous data security standards, fair lending, and privacy laws that apply to highly regulated community banks.

“We call on every member of the House and Senate to join us in opposing this anti-consumer legislation.”

About ICBA

The Independent Community Bankers of America® creates and promotes an environment where community banks flourish. ICBA 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.

With nearly 50,000 locations nationwide, community banks constitute roughly 99 percent of all banks, employ nearly 700,000 Americans and are the only physical banking presence in one in three U.S. counties. Holding more than $5.8 trillion in assets, over $4.8 trillion in deposits, and more than $3.5 trillion in loans to consumers, small businesses and the agricultural community, community banks channel local deposits into the Main Streets and neighborhoods they serve, spurring job creation, fostering innovation and fueling their customers’ dreams in communities throughout America. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at www.icba.org.