What do you know about the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im)? To begin, it “is the official export credit agency of the United State federal government. It was established in 1934 by an executive order, and made an independent agency in the Executive branch by Congress in 1945, for the purposes of financing and insuring foreign purchases of United States goods for customers unable or unwilling to accept credit risk. The mission of the Ban is to create and sustain U.S. jobs by financing sales of U.S. exports to international buyers. The Bank is chartered as a government corporation by the Congress of the United States; it was last chartered for a three-year term in 2012 and extended in September 2014 through June 30th, 2015. Its Charter spells out the Bank’s authorities and limitations. Among them is the principle that Ex-Im Bank does not compete with private sector lenders, but rather provides financing for transactions that would otherwise not take place because commercial lenders are either unable or unwilling to accept the political or commercial risks inherent in the deal. Its current chairman and president is Fred P. Hochberg.”
The FDR administration instituted the Export-Import Bank. The current Congress appears to be ready to let the Bank’s charter expire. Ben Howe, contributor to The Daily Signal, believes “the 80-year-old Washington institution promotes cronyism and corporate welfare.” He made the following video that illustrates why Congress should do nothing and thus let the charter expire.
A new report by Open the Books shows that the Export-Import Bank subsidizes large corporations and picks “winners” among small businesses. It backed loans to exporters and left taxpayers on the hook. It paid six figure salaries to its employees plus bonuses. There are more than 31 investigations into alleged fraud at the bank with at least one indictment already.
From the little I know about the Export-Import Bank, I believe Congress is correct to let the charter expire. The Bank seems to be no more than cronyism and favoritism – all at the taxpayers’ expense.