NCUA Chairman Todd Harper shared his priorities for pandemic recovery and thoughts on the path forward Tuesday at the 2021 CUNA Governmental Affairs Conference. Harper also said he believes NCUA should create a dedicated consumer protection compliance program.
“Going forward, the top priorities for the NCUA Board will be ensuring that the credit union system and the Share Insurance Fund are prepared to weather any economic fallout related to the pandemic. To protect the Fund, we are actively monitoring certain segments of the system, including credit unions closely connected to the oil and gas, travel and leisure, and agricultural sectors, among others. We are also focusing on credit unions with elevated risks, such as those credit unions with large concentrations of commercial real estate loans relative to assets. One thing that seems likely is that, as during past recessions, credit union performance will lag the unemployment rate by one to two years.
“Accordingly, your credit union should pay careful attention to capital, asset quality, earnings, and liquidity,” he added.
Harper said that, as the pandemic and recovery evolve, NCUA will also continue to adjust its supervision and examination program to mitigate potential risks to the Share Insurance Fund and the credit union system.
He said that consumer financial protection and fair and equal access to credit are also among his priorities. He noted that examiners have “observed notable shortfalls” in compliance with the Fair Credit Reporting Act, Electronic Funds Transfer Act, and Truth in Lending Act.
“To address these and other issues, especially as the industry grows in complexity, the NCUA must create a dedicated program to supervise for compliance with consumer financial protection and fair lending laws,” he said.
Harper also challenged those in attendance to deliver more financial products and services, “free of discrimination or unfair practices, to people of color and within communities of color.”
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