Main Street Matters Blog

Find out what's happening in communities across America, from grassroots advocacy efforts, to fintech innovations and everyday successes of Main Street banks.

Main Street Matters

Artificial Intelligence: Hype vs. Reality and What it Means for Community Banks

Oct 26, 2023
To help separate fact from fiction, let’s start with a working definition of AI and related terms, before discussing a few notable use cases for community banks.

Domestic Regulatory Environment for Digital Assets Continues to Evolve

Oct 23, 2023
The significant upheaval in the crypto markets—and its impact on consumers and national security—has accelerated Washington’s attention to digital assets policy. Prudential banking regulators, the White House, and the Treasury Department have pursued a range of intertwining policy initiatives, all with direct consequences for the nation’s community banks.

Crypto Collapses and Security Concerns Renew Debate Over Digital Assets Policy

Oct 16, 2023
Remaining aware of developments in the digital assets industry is critical as crypto entities seek greater access to the traditional financial system and policymakers in Congress deliberate paths forward.

Sheltered Harbor Continues Expansion to Protect Against Rise of Malware

Oct 3, 2023
With traditional backup and recovery systems at risk of compromise in the event of a malware attack on IT systems, ICBA helped found the Sheltered Harbor initiative to protect against cybercrime.

The Fintech Assist: What Community Banks Can Expect Next in Fintech Payments

Sep 20, 2023
Sixty percent of all fintech startups are intersecting with the payments space in some manner. Increasingly, they’re partnering with banks or targeting their offerings directly to support community bank operations. Cue the rise of the banking- and payments-as-a-service relationship as exhibit A.

ICBA ThinkTECH Solutions Forum: A Pitch and Probe Approach to FedNow Solutions

Sep 11, 2023
Innovation, like time, is constantly moving forward, which is why even before we wrapped up our 2023 ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator program, plans were well underway for the first of three ICBA ThinkTECH Solutions Forums this year.

After 15 Years, the Federal Government Should End its Conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

Sep 6, 2023
A lot has changed in the 15 years that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been in federal conservatorship, including a restoration of the health of the mortgage market and the financial strength of these housing-focused enterprises. What hasn’t changed is the need for the federal government to follow established law and ensure its conservatorship of Fannie and Freddie is temporary.

FedNow is Live. Now What?

Aug 24, 2023
FedNow launched on July 20—with eager anticipation from the payments industry. But in the past month, we’ve not heard much about transaction volume, use cases, or user experiences. Fortunately, our senior vice president of payments industry relations, Nick Denning, has been following FedNow closely and shared with me his insider’s view on where things stand for FedNow and community banks.

ICBA Community Launches with Nearly 1,000 Members in First Week

Jul 26, 2023
It’s been an exciting week at ICBA. After months of behind-the-scenes work to fulfill our vision of building an online national professional network exclusively for community bankers, our ICBA Community officially launched July 11. The numbers speak to its overwhelming reception by ICBA members.

Support for FDIC Special Assessment Exemplifies ICBA’s One Mission: Community Banks

Jul 25, 2023
We urged the FDIC to finalize the rule as proposed and applauded the agency for using an assessment base that will result in no special assessments for any community bank with less than $5 billion in assets.