The U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank closed its doors on Tuesday following a lapse in Congressional authority. The 81-year-old agency provided financing for both American companies that export goods and their foreign customers, helping to secure American exporters’ access to emerging markets. But following a push by conservative Republicans who claimed the Ex-Im Bank was a form of corporate welfare, Congress declined to extend the Bank’s charter before recessing for the Fourth of July holiday. Absent congressional action, the Ex-Im Bank is now unable to authorize new loans, insurance, or guarantees, effectively freezing new projects.American businesses that rely on the Ex-Im Bank are concerned that, without access to the capital the Ex-Im Bank provides, they will not be able to take on large-scale projects abroad, resulting in a substantial loss of jobs here in the United States. The Ex-Im Bank often operates as a lender of last resort, taking on loans typically considered too large or risky for traditional banking arrangements. And companies and lawmakers alike are concerned that the shuttering of the Ex-Im Bank will enhance the positon of foreign competitors, which often are supported by export subsidies and financing by their home governments. As Jay Timmons, President and CEO… Read full this story
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