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US Bank Lobbyist Numbers Rise To A Record Level In The Wake Of Regulatory Backlash

Citibank (Photo: Wikipedia)

The employment of smaller lenders, who are subject to tighter regulations and stricter scrutiny following last year’s turmoil, has resulted in the largest concentration of big bank lobbyists in Washington since the global financial crisis of 2007–2009, according to new lobbying data.

$50 Billion And More Assets

Based on data from nonpartisan political transparency group OpenSecrets, 486 federal lobbyists represented seven trade groups and banks with $50 billion or more in assets at the end of 2023, according to a Reuters investigation. The data indicates that this was an increase of 3.4% over 2022, when the lobbying ranks in the business reached their highest point since 2008.

According to Reuters‘ analysis of OpenSecrets data from 2008 to 2023, the most recent figures were the highest of all the years in that time frame. Registered individual lobbyists employed by the banks as well as by other companies that the banks and trade organizations contract with are included in the headcount.

Poor Regulations

Lenders with more than $100 billion in assets that are not among the eight Wall Street giants, like Capital One (COF.N), TD Bank (TD.TO), and Truist (TFC.N), have been a major factor in the bank lobby’s rise over the last six years.

In 2023, there were 255 registered lobbyists for this group of 23 banks, up 11% from 2022 and the biggest number since 2008.

Bank Lobbyist

Source- CNN

The gains align with the growing list of policy concerns voiced by midsize lenders in response to President Joe Biden’s financial regulators’ demands to crack down on unfair lending practices, transaction fees, and capital hikes that will reduce earnings.

According to regulators, capital increases will strengthen the financial sector and are critically needed after three institutions failed last year. The regulations also seek to curb long-standing unfair practices that harm consumers. Banks claim that many of the regulations are harsh and poorly thought out.

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