View from CBA - April 17, 2015

MasterCard Reaches Tentative Agreement with Target for $19 million

On Wednesday, an agreement was reached between MasterCard and Target to resolve claims related to Target's 2013 data breach. I am glad to see forward movement in the resolution of costs incurred as a result of the retailer's breach. Going forward, our chief mission should be to achieve a fair, reasonable and uniform data security standard across all industries to better safeguard consumers' sensitive personal and financial information before a breach occurs. Accordingly, I applaud Senators Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) for introducing the Data Security Act of 2015. This bill would level the playing field by ensuring a shared responsibility between merchants and banks to protect consumers' information. CBA strongly supports this legislation and will be monitoring its movement through Congress.


Earnings Reports Show Tight Margins

Though still early, earnings reports this quarter continue to show fairly tight and flat margins. Those that have shown any improvement have boosted increases in commercial lending. Banks with more diversified earnings streams are showing stronger results than those that do not. We will be watching the remainder of the reports as they come out in the next week.


REPEAT: Anti-Big Bank Rhetoric is Back

The 2016 presidential election is more than a year and a half away, but it appears as if we are going to be showered with another wave of class warfare and anti-banking rhetoric. This week, Hillary Clinton praised Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) as a progressive champion, and in a nod to their friendship, Clinton referenced Senator Warren's efforts "to hold powerful people's feet to the fire," including "bankers, lobbyists, senior government officials and yes, even presidential aspirants." Hold on to your seats, the next year and a half may get even uglier.


"Live & Let Die" Panel Lives On

Many of you have commented on how much you enjoyed the CBA LIVE panel: Retail Banking "Live and Let Die." Well, it appears this discussion has continued beyond the halls of the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek. This week, ICBA's Cam Fine and Bankstock's Tom Brown went at it again. Cam had this to say about JPMorgan Chase's Jamie Dimon's letter to shareholders. In response, Tom Brown had this to say. Should we consider hosting the two at next year's CBA LIVE?


Meetings in the Lone Star State

This week, CBA's Liz Terry and Dave Pommerehn visited with four of our member banks in Texas. Data security, consumer choice, overdraft, and risk dominated the conversation. Many thanks to Rick Ledezma and Yvonne de la Rosa of San Antonio Federal Credit Union; Dalia Martinez and Eddie Aldrete of International Bank of Commerce; Gary Lanier, Chuck Smith and Rhonda Kleinecke of Texas Dow Employees Credit Union; Paul Olivier, Raquel Cardenas, Gary Gavegan, Cliff McCauley, Christy Merecka, Richard Foster, Alison Boyd Bernhard, and Christy Bachmeyer of Frost Bank for assembling their leadership teams for us to meet while in town.



Former CBA Board member Cathy Nash has been named President and CEO of Woodforest National Bank. Cathy was instrumental in our organization's success during her time on the board from 2009 to 2013. She recently served as President and CEO of Citizens Republic Bancorp.

Congratulations to Experian for being named the "Organization of the Year" by the Institute For Financial Literacy. Experian was also presented with the Excellence in Financial Literacy Education (EIFLE) Award during the Annual Conference on Financial Education in San Antonio this week.