Morgan Stanley on Durbin: The Senate's bill is within the realm of expectations

March 16, 2011 at 1:00 PM
Morgan Stanley released the following important note today regarding Durbin and it is an important read:
Senate's bill is within the realm of expectations... strong bi-partisan co-sponsors: Our quick read of Senator Tester's (D-MT) bill dropped earlier today suggests it goes a little farther than its House counterpart by calling for a 2-year delay in the implementation of Durbin, and is a little more encompassing as to what it determined should be "examined." Specific components of the bill include: 
  • Voids any proposed legislation currently under Durbin (but leaves the directive of Durbin in place)


  •  Calls for a 2-year delay (1-year study, 1-year for the Fed to implement)

  •  The Fed, FDIC, OCC and NCUA will do the study, which bodes well for industry as additional (and some would argue less conflicted) perspectives will be assessed

  •  It is more comprehensive than the House bill given its examination of (to name a few) the likelihood of consumers benefitting from lower retail prices, impact of lower interchange on small vs. large merchants, consequences from the elimination of payment guarantee, and relationship between payment forms and incremental sales

  •  Co-sponsors include: Corker (R-TN), Lee (R-UT), Roberts (R-KS), Toomey (R-PA), Kyl (R-AZ), Thune (R-SD) Carper (D-DE), Coons (D-DE), Nelson (D-NE)

 The race for 60 votes in the Senate remains difficult: Despite the fact that a legislative fix seems more possible today, we are still not counting on it and continue to view potential litigation and industry fixes as more viable.


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