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ICBA Applauds Home Depot’s ILC Application Withdrawal

Legislation to Permanently Close ILC Loophole Still

Washington, D.C. (Jan. 25, 2008)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) applauded Home Depot's decision to withdraw its application for federal deposit insurance to acquire Ener-Bank, a Utah-based industrial loan company (ILC).

“ICBA is pleased that Home Depot is withdrawing its application for an ILC,” said James P. Ghiglieri, Jr., ICBA chairman and president of Alpha Financial Group, Inc., Toluca, Ill. “Merging the nation’s second largest retailer with an FDIC-insured bank would have been particularly troubling in light of our nation’s current economic challenges.”

“We urge Congress to push ahead with legislation to close the ILC loophole once and for all to preserve the economic diversity necessary to sustain vibrant and dynamic communities and to protect the safety and soundness of the nation’s deposits,” Ghiglieri said. “Without a permanent solution through legislation, there is nothing to prevent Home Depot, Wal-Mart, or any other large commercial enterprise from applying for an ILC in the future.  This loophole needs to be closed to protect the safety and soundness of our banking system and protect our nation’s taxpayers from potential future bailouts.”

ICBA commends Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.) for their continued support to advance ILC legislation.

ICBA has been leading the effort to maintain the separation of banking and commerce and will continue to work with lawmakers to close the ILC loophole.