Facing fierce opposition, U.S. bank regulator pick pledges to protect small lenders

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WASHINGTON (Businesshala) – US President Joe Biden’s move to lead one of the nation’s top banking regulators will be focused on ensuring a fair and competitive market with small and medium-sized banks, according to Congressional testimony released on Wednesday. be successful accordingly.

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Soule Omarova will appear before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday to explain why she should be confirmed to head the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), despite protests from banks, Republicans and even some Democrats.

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A professor at Cornell Law School specializing in financial regulation and a former US Treasury Department official, Omarova has won praise from Democratic progressives who believe she will take a tougher stance on Wall Street.

But his nomination faced unusually vocal opposition from business and banking groups, who say his academic work to sabotage large institutions and provide public bank accounts for the Federal Reserve is anti-capitalist.

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Washington insiders said that while the nominees may pass by a simple majority, Omarova may still struggle to secure enough votes in a divided Senate.

In her prepared testimony, Omarova said she wanted to protect small and medium-sized banks, which have been steadily shrinking in number in recent years, from harming communities’ access to credit.

“Community banks are also forced to compete with big tech companies like Facebook, which don’t play by the same rules,” she wrote.

Born and raised in Kazakhstan during the time of the Soviet Union, Omarova said she experienced an oppressive state-run system that gave her a “unique admiration” for the dynamic markets of the United States.

As the financial crisis unfolded during his tenure at the Treasury, he said he also saw how powerful market players created excessive risk and left taxpayers to pay the bills.

“We cannot afford a repetition of this disastrous scenario,” she said.

Reporting by Michelle Price; Editing by Bill Burcrot

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