Readers React

How easing federal bank rules helps consumers

To the editor: It was very odd to read Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Vice Chairman Thomas Hoenig refer to banks as "taxpayer-insured." Depositors in U.S. banks are fully insured by the FDIC up to $250,000; however it's the banking industry that bears all financial costs of supporting the FDIC, paying more than $12 billion each year to assure adequate funding. ("Congress could enact rollback of Dodd-Frank limits on derivatives," Dec. 10)

With respect to the issue before Congress, California banks fully support what is a bipartisan compromise seeking to amend a law that harms the ability of banks of all sizes to serve their customers. The majority of banks using swaps, including community banks, do so to hedge or mitigate risk from their ordinary business activities, including lending.

Hedging and mitigating risk are not only good business practices, they are also important tools that banks use to help borrowing customers hedge their own business risks.

Rodney Brown, Sacramento

The writer is president and chief executive of the California Bankers Assn.

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To the editor: It appears that our House has made a down payment on our next Wall Street bank bailout. The thin control enacted to prevent a bailout repeat is being removed in the Omnibus funding bill to satisfy major banks to the detriment of all taxpayers who are just now recovering from the worst recession since the Great Depression.

Will we never learn? Banks are too big to fail, but not too big to take our money. Did nobody listen to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.)?

George Giacoppe, Riverside

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