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Financial Services Law Insights and Observations


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  • OCC Issues Updated List of Permissible Activities for Banks and Federal Savings Associations

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On October 13, the OCC issued an update to its list of permissible activities for national banks, federal savings associations, and operating subsidiaries that are engaged in “the business of banking.” Activities Permissible for National Banks and Federal Savings Associations, Cumulative updates the list of permissible activities for banks, reflects precedent not previously included or issued since the last edition, streamlines certain entries for readability, and includes certain OCC interpretive letters and corporate decisions issued after the Dodd-Frank Act transferred responsibility from the Office of Thrift Supervision to the OCC. While the update consolidates existing guidance, the OCC stated that “OCC precedent remains applicable until rescinded, superseded, or revised,” and banks should not rely solely on the update for guidance but “should review the authorities cited and other relevant precedent before engaging in an activity.” Furthermore, according to an OCC-issued press release, “[i]ndividual OCC-regulated institutions may be precluded from engaging in otherwise permissible activities based on safety and soundness or other supervisory reasons.”

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC OTS Bank Supervision

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  • OCC Issues Updated Guidance for Managing Bank Premises and Equipment

    Federal Issues

    On November 29, the OCC announced the release of a revised Bank Premises and Equipment booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. The revised booklet, which replaces the booklet of the same title issued in March 1990, applies to examinations of all national banks and federal savings associations engaged in the acquisition, management, and disposal of bank premises and equipment. According to the accompanying OCC Bulletin, the revised booklet incorporates updated statutory and regulatory citations and revised examination procedures since the integration of the Office of Thrift Supervision into the OCC in 2011. The bulletin explains that the booklet also replaces the "Investment in Bank Premises" booklet of the Comptroller’s Licensing Manual and the "Fixed Assets" section of the former Office of Thrift Supervision Examination Handbook.

    Federal Issues Banking Consumer Finance OCC OTS Licensing Comptroller's Licensing Manual

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  • FDIC Proposed Rule to Consolidate Regulations

    Federal Issues

    On November 1, the FDIC published a proposed rule that would rescind and remove Part 391 subpart A (Security Procedures, transferred from the former OTS) from the Code of Federal Regulations and to amend FDIC regulations at Part 326 to make the removed OTS regulations applicable to state savings associations. Comments on the proposal are due by January 3, 2017.

    Federal Issues FDIC Banking OTS Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

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  • OCC Integrates Interagency Rules, Proposes Integrated Licensing Rules

    Consumer Finance

    On May 16, the OCC issued a final rule to integrate its interagency rules, which would combine, without any substantive amendments, rules related to consumer protection in insurance sales, BSA compliance, management interlocks, appraisals, disclosure and reporting of CRA-related agreements, and the FCRA. On May 21, the OCC issued a notice of proposed rulemaking to integrate the OCC’s licensing rules. The OCC states that for many of the licensing rules, the proposal incorporates the licensing provisions for federal savings associations into the existing national bank rule, but in other cases, the proposal includes separate rules for national banks and federal savings associations because the rules do not apply to both charters, are better organized as separate rules, or are difficult to integrate because of their differences and complexity. Some rules that would continue to apply only to national banks are revised to be consistent with the changes proposed for federal savings associations. The OCC also proposes substantive changes to certain licensing rules to “eliminate unnecessary requirements, promote fairness in supervision, and further the safe and sound operation of the institutions the OCC supervises.”

    OCC Bank Supervision OTS Licensing

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  • OCC Continues OTS Integration, Rescinds OTS Compliance Documents

    Consumer Finance

    On November 20, the OCC announced in Bulletin 2013-34 that as part of its ongoing implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act’s mandate that the OCC integrate Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS) policies with existing OCC policies, the OCC is rescinding the OTS compliance documents listed in an appendix provided with the announcement. A second appendix lists OCC policy guidance that the OCC is applying to federal savings associations in cases where policy guidance did not already exist. The announcement does not cover OTS policies and guidance related to the FCRA, the CRA, UDAP, or mortgage regulations, which the OCC plans to address at a later date.

    OCC Bank Compliance OTS Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

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