“Working with the federal government, banks of all sizes worked day and night to get the Paycheck Protection Program off the ground in the middle of a pandemic. The size, scale and speed of their response was unprecedented, delivering more than $500 billion in PPP loans that have allowed struggling small businesses affected by COVID-19 to survive, helping to save tens of millions of jobs. The House Select Subcommittee’s report fails to capture a full and complete picture of the PPP program and the banking industry’s significant efforts to make it a success.
“Banks of all sizes were always encouraged by the administration to process loans for both new and existing customers at the onset of the PPP program. They were also encouraged to start processing loans as quickly as possible to support the deteriorating economy. To achieve that goal, many banks processed applications from existing borrowers first since they already had the necessary borrower information needed to meet regulatory requirements, including Know Your Customer rules. As a result of this immediate action by the banking industry, thousands of small businesses from every region of the country were able to keep their businesses open and continue paying their employees. Over time, as the Treasury and SBA provided more clarity, it became easier to gather information to process new customers in this new program. To date, banks of all sizes have delivered the vast majority of the more than 5 million PPP loans issued, and they stand ready to process more if the program is extended.”