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NCUA's Kyle Hauptman Critical of Agency Handling of Overdrafts

At last week's NCUA board table, NCUA Chair Todd Harper was missing due to back surgery. Sole Republican Kyle Hauptman was critical of the agency's handling of overdrafts and related data collection, which he says is rushed, and his ideas on how to improve the agency's actions were ignored.

Hauptman's main points are summarized below:

Key Points

Short Notice and Compliance Challenges: Credit unions were notified of this requirement in January, leaving them with little time to prepare. Suggestions for gradual implementation or aggregated data reporting were dismissed, creating a rush to comply and potential for errors.

Impact on Low-Income Members: Low-income members, who often rely on overdraft protection, may suffer. Without this option, they could face higher costs from bounced checks and other penalties, contrary to the Federal Credit Union Act's goal of supporting those with modest means.

Historical Context: Similar regulations in 2010 led to fewer free checking accounts and higher account maintenance requirements, pushing many into becoming unbanked. The current policy risks repeating this pattern, making it harder for credit unions to serve low-income members.

Economic Realities: Artificially lowering fees can disrupt financial services. Members would rather pay a $30 overdraft fee than face severe penalties for missed payments. The NCUA's move might reduce available financial options, especially for those already struggling.

Broader Implications: The NCUA's focus on reducing non-interest income amidst rising interest rate risks complicates credit unions' financial stability. This regulation could unintentionally harm the very people it aims to protect.


The NCUA's new reporting rules, though aimed at transparency, risk creating more problems for credit unions and their members, especially those with low incomes. A more considered approach is needed to avoid these negative outcomes and better support financial stability and inclusion.


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