- ICBA supports legislative and regulatory changes that would improve the ability of community banks to raise capital.
- ICBA opposes the inequitable capital treatment of community banks, based solely on corporate structure, for banks participating in economic stimulus programs such as the Emergency Capital Investment Program. Subchapter S banks should receive the same capital treatment as Subchapter C banks when participating in economic stimulus programs designed to increase capital investments in local communities.
- Subchapter S of the tax code should be updated to facilitate capital formation for community banks by (1) increasing the shareholder limit for Subchapter S eligibility from 100 to 200; (2) allowing the issuance of preferred shares, and (3) permitting Subchapter S shares, both common and preferred, to be held in individual retirement accounts (IRAs).
- The asset threshold under the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Improvement Act (FDICIA) for requiring an annual audit should be raised from $500 million to $1 billion, and the asset threshold for an internal control report, also required by FDICIA, should be raised from $1 billion to $5 billion.
- SEC Regulation D should be revised so that the definition of an “accredited investor” includes individuals with a net worth of $1 million or more, including their primary residence.
- ICBA is supportive of additional upward adjustments to the asset limits under the Federal Reserve’s Small Bank Holding Company Policy Statement to ensure these thresholds remain current and properly align with industry consolidation trends.
Since 2007, the public capital markets have often been either unavailable or unattractive to many community banks and holding companies. Community banks have had to rely more on existing shareholders, directors and insiders for capital raises and less on new investors, including institutions and private equity investors.
Additionally, expensive regulations, such as FDICIA, deter community banks from growth, by requiring banks above a certain asset size to incur greater regulatory costs. These regulations, which have not been updated in decades, were intended to apply to only some community banks but now capture many more community banks due to outdated asset thresholds.
Staff Contact: Chris Cole and Jenna Burke