Press Releases

Chairman Hensarling Delivers Opening Statement at Hearing with the Comptroller of the Currency


Washington, June 13, 2018 -

Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) delivered the following opening statement at today’s full committee hearing with Joseph Otting the Comptroller of the Currency:

Today we will welcome Joseph Otting, the 31st Comptroller of the Currency, who took office approximately seven months ago. We will welcome him for his first appearance before the Committee. What a difference seventeen months makes in the life of a nation and what a difference public policy makes.

Working together with the Administration, this Congress has made a huge difference [to] produce the most booming economy in many people’s lives.

Unemployment now is recorded at the lowest in a generation, tied for the lowest in almost half a century. Also, African American unemployment is the lowest on record - lowest on record - and the gap has narrowed.

Last month, there were actually more job openings than there were unemployed. It’s the first time since record keeping began in the year 2000 that [this] has occurred. After years, and years, and years of press reports that unemployed people are seeking factories, we now have press reports that factories are struggling to find workers instead.

We have reports of robust wage growth as well – the best wage growth in eleven years – and in the last wage report 49 of 50 states had positive wage growth.

The National Federation of Independent Business has said the highest numbers of businesses are increasing worker pay that they have ever recorded in their survey.

University of Michigan reports that consumer confidence is at the highest level in fourteen years, and even, even the New York Times has had to admit, “The economy is humming.”

Again, this did not happen by accident. It is a result of the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act and the effort particularly of the administration and our banking regulators to right size regulation - to properly calibrate regulation - to ensure that it is working for working people because all regulation regardless of its intent, regardless of its purpose, can ultimately have a cost on access and cost - cost to credit – [for] hardworking Americans.

And so it is an incredible achievement that once again we are seeing average 3% economic growth. And that’s so important because when one looks at the data; one sees that in American history the greatest employment probably almost 80% of job gains, of income gains, of poverty reduction takes place in 3% growth years. How wonderful it is to have regulators who are committed to growth in our economy. Again the greatest boost to our economy is not a government economic stimulus plan, it is not quantitative easing, but it is business confidence that comes from good public policy and smart regulatory efforts.

I look forward to hearing from our witness. I know that he has been quite active on a number of fronts including FinTech charters, Volcker, and BSA and AML. I look forward to getting into all of that and seeing what is it we can do to make sure that 3% economic growth continues for all working Americans.

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