BPI Commends the CFE Fund for Achieving Significant Milestone, 100+ Bank On Certified Accounts

Washington, D.C. — The Bank Policy Institute commends the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund (CFE Fund) on surpassing an important milestone of more than 100 Bank On nationally certified accounts offered by banks and credit unions, representing more than 50 percent of the market share of U.S. deposits.

“The CFE Fund is working successfully with America’s banks to make it easy and affordable for anyone to open a low-cost bank account,” said BPI President and CEO Greg Baer. “While the work is ongoing, the Bank On program has proven instrumental in helping to produce better outcomes in LMI communities across the nation. We are hopeful that regulators will create the right regulatory incentives—like offering CRA credit—to further encourage use of these products.”

The CFE Fund launched in 2012 and works with local, state and federal governments on solutions to improve the financial stability of low- and moderate-income communities, including through programs like Bank On. The Bank On initiative is an accreditation program governed by the Bank On National Account Standards designed to meet the unique needs of these communities through features such as capped monthly fees, no overdrafts, small opening deposit requirements and access to a debit card.

Recent research from BPI based on program data from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis demonstrated that these accounts have been effective at achieving their intended goals and have effectively scaled up since the program’s inception, with the number of certified accounts tripling from 2018 to January 2021. Given the success of the program, BPI has called on the federal banking agencies to further incentivize banks to adopt these accounts by making these accounts eligible for credit under the Community Reinvestment Act.

To learn more about the Bank On initiative, please click here.


About Bank Policy Institute.

The Bank Policy Institute (BPI) is a nonpartisan public policy, research and advocacy group, representing the nation’s leading banks and their customers. Our members include universal banks, regional banks and the major foreign banks doing business in the United States. Collectively, they employ almost 2 million Americans, make nearly half of the nation’s small business loans, and are an engine for financial innovation and economic growth.

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Austin Anton
Bank Policy Institute

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