Bank executives don’t think the Dodd-Frank Act will fix the problems that led to the financial crisis, according to a survey by consultant Grant Thornton.

While just over half of bank executives are cautiously confident that Dodd-Frank will fix some of the problems inherent in the financial services industry, just under half think it’ll fail completely in its goals.

“Some of it remains to be seen,” said Nichole Jordan, partner and sector leader of Grant Thornton’s Banking and Securities Practice. “But some specifics have already been published about the Consumer Financial Protection Agency, which will require significant new disclosures that will increase costs for banks.”

Jordan said bankers’ negativity about the impact of the new rules may be because the outcome of much of the rulemaking to come is as yet uncertain. Added to increased reporting costs and curbing of some formerly lucrative banking practices, and bankers are not a happy bunch.

Bank executives are most worried about the creation of the much-hyped Consumer Financial Protection Agency (73%), although a close second, 71% of bankers worry that fees paid by merchants to banks for processing debit-card payments due now to be set by the Federal Reserve won’t be “reasonable and proportional.” Many banks currently policed by the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) worry too about what will happen in the coming months when the regulator is eliminated.

“Many institutions currently regulated by the OTS are concerned they’ll be under higher scrutiny than in the past now they’re going to be regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Jordan said. Some requirements are more stringent, and banks are at risk of noncompliance” with rules they now pass, such as those of the qualified thrift lender test.


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