Treasury’s Koide: Prepaid Has Important Role in Financial Services Revolution, Needs to Ask Hard Questions (July 1, 2013)
July 1, 2013
“We’re only at the beginning of a technology-driven revolution in financial services,” Melissa Koide, deputy assistant secretary, office consumer policy, U.S. Treasury Department, said last week during the NBPCA’s second annual Power of Prepaid conference in Washington, D.C. Koide noted that the prepaid platform has brought powerful and positive innovations to financial services thus far, but she said it’s going to take creative thinking and dialogue with regulators for the industry to realize its full potential in this revolution. She challenged attendees to “ask the hard questions” and help define policy and regulation for prepaid of the 21st century. “This means finding the right mix of consumer protections and strategies to empower consumers to use prepaid products effectively whether the products are offered by banks or nonbanks,” Koide continued.
“We also must move beyond the idea that there is an inherent and unavoidable tradeoff between innovation and regulations. It is a false dichotomy; in fact, innovation may help us meet some of our policy objectives,” she added, pointing to possibilities, such as video disclosures and other nontraditional data sources. “Now is the time to show what makes prepaid a powerful platform. Now is the time to show how technology can help accomplish policy goals.” She also urged attendees to share input with the Federal Reserve for its 2013 Payments Study. To participate in the survey, contact Bluefame Consulting LLC at [email protected].