Senate Banking Chairman Chastises Citibank, Bank of America on Guns

Senate Banking Chairman Chastises Citibank, Bank of America on Guns

WASHINGTON—The Senate’s high overseer of banks is criticizing strikes by



Bank of America

to cease doing a little enterprise with the gun trade following the lethal taking pictures in February at a Florida highschool.

Senate Banking Committee Chairman

Mike Crapo

(R., Idaho), in letters to the heads of each banks made public Wednesday, stated he was involved when giant nationwide banks “cut off financial services for lawful businesses they may disfavor.”

Mr. Crapo’s letters, to Bank of America’s

Brian Moynihan

and Citigroup’s

Michael Corbat,

come after the companies took steps in current weeks to curtail enterprise with the gun trade. Mr. Moynihan’s letter was dated Wednesday and Mr. Corbat’s Friday.

Citi, the primary of the 2 large banks to behave, stated final month that it might prohibit its enterprise companions from promoting firearms to clients below the age of 21 and those that haven’t handed a background examine. Bank of America later introduced it might cease lending to producers of military-inspired rifles just like the one used within the taking pictures at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., which left 17 lifeless.

It isn’t clear what concrete steps lawmakers might absorb response to the banks’ strikes, which have divided Republican lawmakers. Some, like Mr. Crapo, whose panel oversees each banks, argue the banks are trying to interchange legislators and form social coverage by limiting entry to credit score. Others desire a extra hands-off method and say banks must be free to make their very own enterprise choices.

A Citi spokesman confirmed the financial institution had acquired Mr. Crapo’s letter and stated the agency would reply. A spokesman for Bank of America declined to remark.

Last week, Republican lawmakers together with Mr. Crapo pressed Federal Reserve Vice Chairman for Supervision

Randal Quarles

to handle the banks’ choices. Mr. Quarles stated it wasn’t the Fed’s place to take a place on weapons.

In his letters to the financial institution chiefs, Mr. Crapo stated he had “serious concerns” in regards to the trade’s potential use of personally identifiable data to “monitor and deny financial services to individuals and companies who are engaging in completely legal and, in this case, constitutionally-protected conduct.”

He stated his committee would focus in coming months on the gathering and use of such private knowledge, and requested the banks to reply a collection of questions, together with how they plan to implement their new insurance policies.

Citi’s new firearms coverage doesn’t change the way it handles buyer knowledge, an individual conversant in its considering stated.

Write to Andrew Ackerman at [email protected]

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