Rules and Rulings

Council Updates

  1. Much has been reported about the regulatory changes in store for the financial services industry under the Trump administration. The president has emphasized that financial regulatory reform is a critical component of his plan to increase economic growth and create jobs. Many community banks, however, are unsure about how they will be affected by the changes.

March 2020

  1. On March 27, 2020 the federal banking agencies issued an interim final rule that provides banking organizations that adopt the Current Expected Credit Losses methodology during the 2020 calendar year with the option to delay for two years the estimated impact of CECL on regulatory capital.  A three-year transition period will then follow to phase out the aggregate amount of the capital benefit provided during the initial two-year delay (total five-year transition period).  This interim final rule does not replace the current three-year transition option in the 2019 CECL revisions to the regulatory capital rules, which remains available to any banking organization at the time that it adopts CECL.
  2. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) has announced that, in light of recent disruptions in economic conditions caused by COVID-19 and current strains in U.S. financial markets, it is issuing an interim final rule that revises the definition of eligible retained income for purposes of the FRB’s total loss-absorbing capacity (TLAC) rule. This revised definition of eligible retained income will make any automatic limitations on capital distributions that could apply under the TLAC rule more gradual and aligns to recent action taken by the banking agencies in the capital rule.
  3. On March 20, 2020 Conference of State Bank Supervisors President John W. Ryan issued a statement in support of FDIC Chairman McWilliams’ recent request to the Financial Accounting Standards Board for a delay in transactions to and exclusions from certain accounting rules due to COVID-19.  In the statement, Mr. Ryan said “allowing institutions to delay their transition to the Current Expected Credit Losses methodology (CECL) will give banks more time to focus on their customers.”  He further stated that “providing clarity on the treatment of COVID-19-related loan modifications for accounting purposes would encourage banks to help their customers in this time of need.”

  4. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has released a resource hub with curated information for business owners, employees, nonprofit, and community organizations impacted by COVID-19.  The hub is organized by topic and includes links to resources about CRA and regulatory guidance, financial counseling and credit protection, health and safety, housing, state and city-specific resources, federal and national resources, as well as information for nonprofits and community organizations and small businesses.

  5. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has issued OCC Bulletin 2020-20 that recommends the use of electronic methods for submitting licensing filings to the OCC during the COVID-19 pandemic. The OCC warns that filing in paper form may result in delays in processing. The OCC strongly recommends that licensing filings be submitted through the Central Application Tracking system (CATS) or through the agency’s secure email system.

  6. On March 22, 2020 the federal banking agencies, jointly with the NCUA, the CFPB and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, issued a further statement encouraging banks to work with borrowers affect by COVID-19 and providing additional information regarding loan modifications. In the statement, regulators said they will not criticize institutions for working with borrowers in a safe and sound manner and will not direct supervised institutions to automatically categorize loan modifications as troubled debt restructurings (TDRs).

  7. On March 18, 2020 the Federal Reserve Board (FRB) announced steps to enhance the liquidity and functioning of crucial money markets. The FRB has established a Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility (MMLF) that will make loans available to eligible financial institutions secured by high-quality assets purchased by the institution from money market mutual funds. The FRB states that the MMLF will assist money market funds in meeting demands for redemptions by households and other investors, enhancing overall market functioning and credit provision to the broader economy.

  8. On March 19, 2020 the federal banking agencies issued a joint statement affirming that, pursuant to the Community Reinvestment Act, the agencies will favorably consider retail banking services and retail lending activities in a financial institution’s assessment areas that are responsive to the needs of low- and moderate-income individuals, small businesses, and small farms affected by COVID-19 and that are consistent with safe and sound banking practices.

  9. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced it will suspend foreclosures and evictions for all FHA-guaranteed loans until the end of April 2020. The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that it has directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to suspend foreclosures and evictions for at least 60 days for GSE-backed single-family mortgages.
  10. On March 18, 2020 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) issued a notice reminding Americans that FDIC-insured institutions remain the safest place for their money. The notice states that, although some banks may have adjusted hours or services in compliance with Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance on social distancing, customers’ deposits remain safe in these banks, as does customer access to their funds. Banks continue to offer ATM, mobile, or online banking services, and many continue to provide services via drive-through windows.
  11. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) announced that it will establish a Commercial Paper Funding Facility (CPFF) to support the flow of credit to households and businesses. By ensuring the smooth functioning of the commercial paper market, the FRB said it is providing credit that will support families, businesses, and jobs across the economy. The CPFF will provide a liquidity backstrop to U.S. issuers of commercial paper through a special purpose vehicle (SPV) that will purchase unsecured and asset-backed commercial paper directly from eligible companies.

  12. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) reported a slight improvement in the performance of first-lien mortgages in the federal banking system during the fourth quarter of 2019. The OCC Mortgage Metrics Report, Fourth Quarter 2019 showed 96.5 percent of mortgages included in the report were current and performing at the end of the quarter, compared to 95.8 percent one year earlier.

  13. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) announced that it will establish a Primary Dealer Credit Facility (PDCF) that will allow primary dealers to support smooth market functioning and facilitate the availability of credit to businesses and households.  The PDCF will offer overnight and term funding with maturities up to 90 days and will be available on March 20, 2020.   The facility will operate for at least six months and may be extended if conditions warrant.

  14. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has issued a statement requesting banks to contact FinCEN and functional regulators as soon as practicable if a COVID-19-affected financial institution has concern about any potential delays in its ability to file required BSA reports. Contact information is included in the statement.

  15. On March 16, 2020 the federal banking agencies released a statement encouraging banks to use the Federal Reserve’s “discount window” in order to continue supporting the needs of households and businesses during times of market stress.

  16. On March 9, 2020 federal financial institution regulators, along with state regulators, encouraged financial institutions to meet the financial needs of customers affected by the coronavirus.  The agencies said they recognize the potential impact of the coronavirus on customers and the operations of many financial institutions, and will provide appropriate regulatory assistance to affected institutions under their supervision.
  17. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) has updated its guidance identifying actions that financial institutions should take to minimize the potential adverse effects of a pandemic.  This updated guidance provides the FFIEC’s prudent expectations that regulated institutions should periodically review related risk management plans, including continuity plans, to ensure their ability to continue to deliver their products and services in a wide range of scenarios and with minimal disruption.

  18. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) has released the instructions for the 2020 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR) cycle.  The instructions confirm that 34 banks will participate in this year’s test.  CCAR consists of both the stress tests that assess firms’ capital needs under stress and, for the largest and most complex banks, a qualitative evaluation of the practices these firms use to determine their capital needs in normal times and under stress.  The FRB states that the 2020 CCAR results will be released by June 30.
  19. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has issued Bulletin 2020-10 containing frequently asked questions (FAQs) to supplement OCC Bulletin 2013-29, “Third-Party Relationships: Risk Management Guidance”, issued on October 30, 2013.  The OCC explains that these FAQs are intended to clarify the OCC’s existing guidance and reflect evolving industry trends.
  20. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has issued a revised “Protecting Tenants at Foreclosure Act” booklet of the Comptrollers Handbook.  This booklet provides information and procedures for examiners in connection with the foreclosure activities and related consumer protections covered under the Protection Tenants at Foreclosure Act (PTFA) of 2009.
  21. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) has issued a final rule to simplify its capital rules for large banks.  As described by the FRB, the framework of the final rule preserves the strong capital requirements established after the financial crisis.  In particular, the FRB said the final rule would increase capital requirements for the largest and most complex banks and decrease requirements for less complex banks.

  22. The federal banking agencies have announced their decision to postpone the 2020 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference, scheduled for March 9 12 in Denver, Colorado due to the growing public health concerns associated with the coronavirus (COVID 19).
  23. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) have issued for public comment a proposal to modify the guidance for resolution plans submitted by large foreign banks, including plans that are due by July 1, 2021.  These updates focus on the agencies’ expectations around a firm’s derivatives and trading activities and payment, clearing, and settlement activities. 

  24. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) has released a series of Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) Analytics Data Tables. The FRB said this data resource is intended to provide insight into the historical relationship between bank lending activity and regulatory assessments.

  25. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has announced an interim final rule to revise its short-term investment fund (STIF) rule for national banks acting in a fiduciary capacity. The rule allows the OCC to authorize banks to temporarily extend maturity limits of these funds. The rule is effective immediately. Comments will be received for 45 days following publication in the Federal Register

February 2020

  1. In remarks delivered to a Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta conference on February 28, 2020, Federal Reserve Board Governor Michelle Bowman said that, like the rest of the financial industry, community banks are investing in new technologies and innovations to meet the growing expectations of their customers.  She said the FRB is actively engaging with the banking industry to encourage responsible innovation in the community banking sector.  Ms. Bowman said it is her belief that the FRB should ensure that the nation’s evolving financial system works for community banks.
  2. The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has issued a Request for Input (RFI) on Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLBank) membership.  This request seeks input on whether FHFA’s existing regulation on FHLBank membership ensures the FHLBank System, consistent with statutory requirements, remains safe and sound, provides liquidity for housing finance through the housing and business cycle, and supports the FHLBanks’ housing finance and community development mission.
  3. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) announced that, for the 5,177 institutions insured by the FDIC, aggregate net income declined 6.9 percent from one year ago.  Full-year 2019 net income declined by 1.5 percent.  The FDIC stated that the decline in quarterly and annual net income was led by lower net interest income and higher expenses.  Average return on assets declined from 1.35 percent in 2018 to 1.29 percent in 2019.  Nearly half of all institutions reported declines in annual net income.
  4. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) have extended the public comment period for proposed changes to the rules implementing the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) until April 8, 2020.  The original Notice of Proposed Rulemaking was published in the Federal Register on January 9, 2020 with a 60-day comment period.  The FDIC and OCC now believe a 30-day extension is appropriate.

  5. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has issued a Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding the collection of time-barred debt.  In this NPR, the Bureau seeks to prohibit collectors from using non-litigation means to collect on time-barred debt unless collectors disclose to consumers during the initial contact and on any required validation notice that the debt is time-barred.

  6. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has issued a Request for Information seeking public input on potential modernization of the agency’s signage and advertising requirements to better reflect how banks and thrift institutions currently operate and how consumers use banking services.  The FDIC said it is gathering public input from a broad range of stakeholders regarding how it might revise and clarify its official sign and advertising rules to reflect marketplace changes and support the banking industry’s efforts to understand, apply, and comply with the FDIC’s rules.
  7. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has announced that it will hold a symposium on Consumer Access to Financial Records and Section 1033 of the Dodd-Frank Act.  The event will be held on February 26, 2020 at 9:30 AM and will be webcast on the agency’s web site.
  8. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued a supplement to its Deposit Insurance Application Procedures Manual that addresses deposit insurance applications involving unique or complex proposals.  The FDIC has also released updated versions of the Manual and the publication titled Applying for Deposit Insurance - A Handbook for Organizers of De Novo Institutions.  The FDIC states that, collectively, these publications comprehensively address the deposit insurance application process.

  9. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY), as administrator of the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR), has announced that, beginning March 2, 2020, it will publish 30-, 90-, and 180-day SOFR Averages as well as a SOFR Index, in order to support a successful transition away from U.S. dollar LIBOR.  In the statement FRBNY said the new SOFR Averages will be referred to as “30-day Average SOFR”, “90-day Average SOFR” and “180-day Average SOFR”.

  10. In a speech delivered on February 10, 2020, Federal Reserve Board Governor Michelle Bowman addressed the issue of interaction between innovation and regulation for community banks.  Governor Bowman began by observing that technologies like predictive analytics, when supported with appropriate consumer protections, can improve bank services and performance by enabling continuous tailoring of the customer experience.  Also, technology helps banks identify products that are best suited for their customers and their business model and strategy.
  11. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council has issued the 2020 edition of A Guide to HMDA Reporting: Getting It Right! For HMDA-related data collected in 2020 and reported in 2021.  The FFIEC has issued this compliance resource to help financial institutions better understand HMDA requirements, including the data collection and reporting provisions.
  12. The federal prudential regulators have announced that the 2020 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference will be held in Denver on March 9-12, 2020.  This biennial conference offers participants from around the country the opportunity to learn about the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) and to discuss best practices and emerging challenges in community development.
  13. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation will hold a webinar to discuss the “Standardized Approach for Counterparty Credit Risk” (SC-CCR), a new risk-based capital approach for calculating the exposure amount for derivative contracts.  The webinar will take place on February 18, 2020 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM ET.

  14. On February 5, 2020 the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced additional steps Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (GSEs) are taking as they transition away from LIBOR as a benchmark rate.


    • Michelle Bowman was sworn in for her second term as a member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System on January 30, 2020.  Governor Bowman had been nominated for a full term on April 4, 2019 and was reconfirmed as a Board member by the U.S. Senate on September 12, 2019.

    January 2020

    1. The federal banking agencies, jointly with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, have issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to amend Section 13 of the Bank Holding Company Act, commonly referred to as the “Volcker Rule.”
    2. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has issued an advisory entitled: Prudent Management of Agricultural Lending During Economic Cycles. The advisory reminds financial institutions engaged in agricultural lending to maintain sound underwriting standards, strong credit administration practices, effective risk management strategies, and appropriate allowances for losses and capital levels through the credit cycle. When agricultural borrowers experience financial difficulties, the FDIC encourages financial institutions to work constructively with borrowers to strengthen the credit and mitigate loss.

    3. On January 31, 2020, the federal bank regulatory agencies released the Shared National Credit Program reviews for the 1st and 3rd Quarters of 2019. The report reflects reviews primarily covering SNC loans originated on or before June 30, 2019. The overall findings show that the share and amount of loan commitments with the lowest supervisory ratings rose slightly between 2018 and 2019. Total commitments with low ratings remain elevated compared to lows reached during prior periods of strong economic performance.

    4. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has finalized amendments to its Securitization Safe Harbor Rule (Rule), addressing circumstances that may arise as a result of the FDIC’s appointment of a conservator or receiver for a federally insured depository institution that sponsored one or more securitization transactions.

    5. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) has finalized a rule it says will simplify and increase the transparency of the FRB’s rules for determining control of a banking organization. If a company has control over a banking organization, that company generally becomes subject to the FRB’s rules and regulations.

    6. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has issued a policy statement which it describes as a common-sense framework on how it intends to apply the “abusiveness” standard in its supervision and enforcement activities.

    7. On January 24, 2020 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued an updated version of its Home Mortgage Disclosure (Regulation C) Small Entity Compliance Guide.  This updated version contains revisions to reflect the CFPB’s 2019 HMDA Rule, which was published in the Federal Register on October 29, 2019.

    8. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has assessed a civil money penalty against an insured financial institution for violations of the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 and the Act’s implementing regulations.

    9. The Alternative Reference Rates Committee has requested public feedback on the appropriate spread adjustment methodology the ARRC should recommend as part of its fallback provision recommendations for cash products referencing LIBOR.  The ARRC noted that respondents to previous consultations expressed strong support for the ARRC to recommend spread adjustments as part of its fallback provision recommendations.  To that end, the ARRC said it intends to recommend a static spread adjustment that would be fixed at a specified time at or before LIBOR’s cessation and make the spread-adjusted rate comparable to LIBOR by minimizing the expected change in the value arising from the move to a replacement benchmark based on the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR).

    10. In a speech delivered to the American Bar Association Banking Law Committee, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chair for Supervision Randal Quarles outlined several actions the FRB is considering to heighten transparency in the supervisory process as a means to aid regulated institutions in evaluating the materiality of cited weaknesses.  In his opening remarks, Vice Chair Quarles acknowledged that the FRB has not “communicated as clearly as it should” with respect to supervisory expectations.
    11. On January 16, 2020, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued a joint statement on heightened cybersecurity risk to remind supervised financial institutions of sound cybersecurity risk management principles.  The agencies explain that these principles elaborate on standards in the Interagency Guidelines Establishing Information Security Standards and in resources provided by the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council members.  The agencies caution that, while preventative controls are important, bank management should be prepared for a worst-case scenario and maintain sufficient continuity planning processes for the rapid recovery, resumption, and maintenance of bank operations.
    12. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced four members who will serve on the Taskforce on Federal Consumer Financial Law.  This taskforce was established to examine the existing legal and regulatory environment facing consumers and financial service providers and report to the CFPB Director its recommendations for ways to improve and strengthen consumer financial laws and regulations.
    13. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has published a notice adjusting the maximum amount of each civil money penalty within its jurisdiction in accordance with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990, as amended. These adjusted maximum penalties are effective immediately for violations occurring on or after November 2, 2015.

    14. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued a proposed rule to address recommendations from its Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act (EGRPRA) report issued in March 2017. This proposal would repeal the regulatory requirements for employment contracts of federal savings associations. The proposal also seeks comment on potential amendments to the rules regarding fiduciary record-keeping requirements and acceptable collateral for self-deposited trust funds.

    15. In a speech delivered on January 8, 2020, to the Urban Institute, Federal Reserve Board Governor Lael Brainard discussed how to strengthen Community Reinvestment Act regulations, which she characterized as a key priority for the Federal Reserve. Brainard said the FRB is committed to getting CRA reform done right.
    16. On December 31, 2019 the federal banking agencies announced the annual adjustments to the asset-size thresholds used to define small bank, small savings association, intermediate small bank, and intermediate small savings association under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) regulations.  These annual adjustments are required under the CRA regulations.

    17. The federal banking agencies have jointly issued a “Statement Regarding Status of Certain Investment Funds and Their Portfolio Investments for Purposes of Regulation O and Reporting Requirements Under Part 363 of FDIC Regulations.”  The statement advises regulated institutions that the agencies will exercise discretion with respect to action against banks or certain asset managers that become principal shareholders of banks regarding certain extensions of credit that otherwise would violate Regulation O.

    December 2019

    1. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency jointly have issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking contemplating comprehensive amendments to regulations implementing the Community Reinvestment Act of 1977. In an effort to improve the current CRA regulatory framework, the NPR proposes changes in four key areas: (1) what qualifies for CRA credit; (2) where CRA activity counts: (3) what method should be used to measure CRA activity; and (4) how banks should collect, record, and report data.

    2. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has announced it will host a Webinar to solicit feedback regarding its supervisory appeals and dispute resolution processes for FDIC-supervised institutions. The FDIC said this session will provide an opportunity for bankers and other interested parties to provide input and recommendations regarding these processes. The FDIC said it will also be seeking input regarding the role of the Office of the Ombudsman in assisting in resolving disagreements. The agency said participants will be requested to provide suggestions on information that it could publish on these topics.
    3. The Board of Directors of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has approved for publication a notice setting the designated reserve ratio (DRR) for the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) at 2 percent for 2020, the same ratio level set for 2019.  By statute, the FDIC is required to establish and publish a DRR before the beginning of each calendar year.

    4. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is publishing a Notice of Rescission of Statements of Policy, with an effective date of December 31, 2019.  This Notice identifies four FDIC-only Statements of Policy that staff believes should be rescinded because they are outdated.

    5. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is inviting comment on proposed revisions to its regulations relating to the brokered deposits restrictions that apply to less than well capitalized insured depository institutions. The NPR would create a new framework for analyzing certain terms for purposes of the brokered deposit restrictions, including “facilitation” and “primary purpose”. The NPR would also establish an application process and related reporting requirements with respect to the primary purpose exception.

    6. The U.S. Treasury Office of Financial Research has issued its 2019 Annual Report to Congress presenting its assessment of the state of the U.S. financial system. This report is required by the Dodd-Frank Act.

    7. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has released its Semiannual Risk Perspective for Fall 2019, highlighting risks facing national banks and federal savings associations based on data as of June 30, 2019.

    8. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has released a strategic analysis of BSA reporting in order to share information related to elder financial exploitation. Based upon Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) filed between October 2013 and August 2019, FinCEN reports that elders face an increased threat to their financial security by both domestic and foreign actors.

    9. The three federal banking agencies, jointly with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the National Credit Union Administration, have issued a statement on the use of alternative data in underwriting by banks, credit unions, and non-bank financial firms. In the statement, the agencies note the benefits that using alternative data may provide to consumers, such as expanding access to credit and enabling consumers to obtain additional products and more favorable pricing and terms.

    10. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPR) to address certain aspects of the agency’s Remittance Rule (Rule). The Rule generally requires companies that provide remittance transfers in the normal course of business to disclose to consumers certain fees and the exchange rates that apply to transfers. The Rule also includes an exception that allows certain banks to estimate the fee and exchange rate information instead of disclosing exact amounts in certain circumstances; however, this exception expires by law in July 2020.
    11. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has announced the panels for its December 10, 2019 “Accuracy in Consumer Reporting Workshop”. This workshop, co-hosted by the Federal Trade Commission, seeks to bring together stakeholders – including industry representatives, consumer advocates, and regulators – for a wide-ranging public discussion on the many issues impacting the accuracy of consumer reports. The agencies are inviting interested individuals to submit comments recommending topics that should be addressed or specific information on topics listed in the agencies’ announcement.

    12. The banking agencies, jointly with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, has issued a statement clarifying the legal status of hemp growth and production and the relevant requirements under the Bank Secrecy Act for banks providing services to hemp-related businesses.
    13. The Federal Reserve System will hold a webinar on December 12, 2019 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM ET to discuss the regulatory requirements for resolving errors for accounts subject to Regulation E.  Speakers from the Federal Reserve Banks of Minneapolis and New York will provide an overview of the requirements, discuss the effect of an amendment to apply the error resolution requirements to prepaid accounts effective April 2019, and review recent error resolution issues raised during examinations and through consumer complaints.

    14. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has posted its Formal and Informal Enforcement Actions Manual to its web site to provide greater transparency regarding the agency’s enforcement program.  The manual provides direction for professional staff related to the work necessary to develop formal and informal enforcement actions.  The FDIC says the manual is intended to support the work of field office, regional office, and Washington office staff involved in processing and monitoring enforcement actions.

    15. The banking agencies, under the auspices of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, will conduct a webinar to discuss revisions to the FFIEC 051 Call Report that took effect in 2019 and the changes to this report that are proposed to take effect beginning with the March 31, 2020 report date.  Institutions with less than $5 billion in total assets that meet certain other criteria are eligible to file FFIEC 051.  The webinar is scheduled for December 10, 2019, from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM ET.

    November 2019

    1. On November 26, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation released aggregate third quarter 2019 call report data. The FDIC stated that the banking industry reported positive results for the quarter despite nonrecurring events at three large institutions.
    2. The Federal Reserve Board has released Perspectives from Main Street: Bank Branch Access in rural Communities, a report that examines how rural consumers and small businesses use bank branches and how their communities have been affected by branch closures.

    3. November 27, 2019

      The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has announced it is reducing the rates in all fee schedules by 10 percent for the 2020 calendar year. This follows on the 10 percent reduction the agency implemented for the 2019 year.

    4. The Federal Reserve Board has issued its November 2019 Supervision and Regulation Report summarizing banking conditions and the agency’s supervisory and regulatory activities during the period.

    5. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is requesting public comment on an assessment it will conduct on the TRID Integrated Disclosure Rule. The Bureau said that, as part of this assessment, it intends to address the TRID Rule’s effectiveness in meeting the purposes and objectives of the Dodd-Frank Act (Act), the specific goals of the rule, and other relevant factors. The Bureau explained that it is welcoming comment on the feasibility and effectiveness of the assessment plan, recommendations to improve the assessment plan, and recommendations for modifying, expanding, or eliminating the TRID rule.
    6. On November 20, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) published its Fall 2019 Agenda. This agenda lists the regulatory matters the Bureau reasonably anticipates having under consideration during the period from October 1, 2019 to September 30, 2020.

    7. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) will hold a teleconference on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM Eastern. The conference is entitled: “Understanding the Requirements of the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z) and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) Integrated Disclosure Rule (TRID Rule)”.

    8. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act amended the Federal Deposit Insurance Act to provide a statutory definition of a high volatility commercial real estate acquisition, development, and construction (HVCRE ADC) loan. The banking agencies have now issued an interagency final rule that would amend their regulatory capital rules to conform the definition of HVCRE exposure to this statutory definition. The preamble to the final rule includes interpretations for certain terms of the revised HVCRE definition to facilitate uniform application of the revised definition that are generally consistent with the instructions to the Call Report.  It also clarifies the capital treatment for loans that finance the development of land under the revised HVCRE exposure definition.
    9. The FDIC has announced publication of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would codify in regulation guidance in FDIC General Counsel’s Opinion No. 11, published in 1998. The proposed regulation would clarify the law governing the interest rates that state-chartered banks and insured branches of foreign banks may charge, would address legal uncertainty resulting from the Madden v. Midland Funding, LLC decision, and continue to promote parity between state banks and national banks.

    10. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is seeking public comment on a proposal to convert the agency’s Statement of Policy (SOP) for Section 19 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act to a regulation. Section 19 prohibits, without the prior written consent of the FDIC, a person convicted of any criminal offense involving dishonesty or breach of trust or money laundering, or who has entered into a pretrial diversion or similar program, from becoming or continuing as in institution-affiliated party; owning or controlling, directly or indirectly, an insured institution; or otherwise participating, directly or indirectly, in the conduct of the affairs of an insured institution.

    11. The banking agencies have issued a final rule to implement a new approach for calculating the exposure amount of derivative contracts under the agencies’ regulatory capital rules. This final rule replaces the current exposure methodology (CEM) as an alternative method for purposes of calculating advanced approaches total risk-weighted assets under the capital rule. The final rule requires that banking organizations subject to the Category I and II standards in the interagency tailoring final rule use the new approach to calculate their standardized total risk-weighted assets; all other banking organizations could elect to use either the CEM or the new methodology for purposes of calculating their standardized total risk-weighted assets.

    12. The banking agencies have issued a final rule to amend the regulatory capital rules to exclude from the supplementary leverage ratio certain central bank deposits of custodial banks, in accordance with section 402 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act). Section 402 defines a custodial bank as any depository institution holding company predominantly engaged in custody, safekeeping, and asset servicing activities, including any insured depository institution subsidiary of such a holding company.

    13. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) has issued the Business Continuity Management Booklet, which is part of the FFIEC Information Technology Examination Handbook. This booklet replaces the Business Continuity Planning booklet issued in February 2015.

    14. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued a multi-part analysis of the changes in the U.S. banking system since the 1950s, specifically focusing on changes occurring since the financial crisis in 2008. These analyses address the shift in lending from banks to nonbanks, how corporate borrowing has moved between banks and capital markets, and the migration of some home mortgages and servicing from banks to nonbanks.

    15. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has issued a report providing state-by-state scores of financial well-being. The CFPB stated that these scores are based on bureau analysis of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Foundation’s 2018 National Financial Capability Study.
    16. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has issued an interpretive rule clarifying that the 2013 Loan Originator rule does not require loan originator organizations to comply with certain screening and training requirements if the individual loan originator is authorized to act as a loan originator with temporary authority under the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing (SAFE) Act of 2008. The Bureau announced that it has also updated the Loan Originator Rule Small Entity Compliance Guide to include reference to the interpretive rule.
    17. At a recent Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) symposium on the small business data collection requirements of the Dodd-Frank Act (Act), CFPB Director Kathleen Kraninger said the Bureau is working to meet the Act’s mandates without impeding access to credit. Ms. Kraninger said the Bureau recognizes the potential impact of the Act’s provisions on financial institutions and small businesses, including minority and women-owned entities.

    18. The federal banking agencies, under the auspices of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC), have published proposed regulatory reporting changes that apply to all three versions of the Call Report (FFIEC 031, 041, and 051) and to the Regulatory Capital Reporting for Institutions subject to the Advanced Capital Adequacy Framework (FFIEC 101).  Formal notice of the proposed changes was provided to insured depository institutions by means of an FFIEC letter dated November 5, 2019.

    19. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) is inviting public comment on a proposal to extend by 18 months the initial compliance dates for foreign banks subject to the FRB’s single-counterparty credit limit rule. The FRB said this extension would provide additional time for foreign jurisdictions’ versions of the rule to become effective and would apply only to the combined U.S. operations of the foreign banks and not to any U.S. intermediate holding companies of those banks.

    20. At a research conference sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, Federal Reserve Board Governor Lael Brainard discussed the ways climate-related risks may affect the U.S. financial system and the broader economy. Governor Brainard began by observing that in order to support a strong economy and a stable financial system, the Federal Reserve needs to analyze and adapt to important changes to the economy and financial system. She said this is no less true for climate change than it was for globalization or the information technology revolution. Ms. Brainard said that to fulfill the FRB’s core responsibilities, it will be important to study the implications of climate change for the economy and the financial system and to adapt the agency’s work accordingly.
    21. The Federal Housing Finance Agency has released an updated strategic plan for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, setting forth three broad objectives for the GSEs including their eventual exit from conservatorship. Under the plan, the GSEs will move toward developing and implementing FHFA-approved strategies to ensure the efficient use of capital.

    22. The Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Justice announced that they have entered into a memorandum of understanding regarding the handling of potential violations under the False Claims Act (FCA). The MOU states that violations will be addressed primarily through HUD administrative proceedings and will be referred to DOJ only in certain circumstances.

    23. On November 4, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board released the results of its October 2019 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey of Lending Practices for the most recent three-month period. Regarding loans to businesses, respondents indicated that they left their standards on C&I loans basically unchanged, while demand for these loans weakened. Banks also reportedly tightened standards on CRE loans, while demand for most categories of CRE loans saw little change.

    24. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has announced plans to publish daily three compounded averages of the Secured Overnight Financing Rate (SOFR), of 30, 90, and 120 days, as well as a daily SOFR index as a means to allow users to calculate average rates over custom time periods. The New York Fed has also released its methodology for calculating the compounded averages and index. The New York Fed plans to initiate publication of these averages in the first half of 2020.

    25. On October 28, 2019, the U.S. House of Representatives voted unanimously to pass H.R. 4067, the Financial Inclusion in Banking Act. This Bill seeks to address acknowledged barriers in traditional banking and promote greater inclusion in the U.S. financial system. The Bill, if enacted, would empower the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Office of Community Affairs to lead coordination with the Bureau, and also work with other federal departments and agencies, trade associations, and civil rights groups in investigating strategies to improve participation in the traditional banking system.

    26. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Reserve Board have announced the dollar thresholds in Regulation Z (Truth in Lending) and Regulation M (Consumer Leasing) that will apply for determining exempt consumer credit and lease transactions in 2020. These thresholds are set pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Act, which requires an annual adjustment of these thresholds based upon the annual percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

    27. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Federal Reserve Board, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that the threshold for exempting loans from special appraisal requirements for higher-priced mortgage loans during 2020 will increase from $26,700 to $27,200. This threshold amount will become effective January 1, 2020, and is based on the annual percentage increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) as of June 1, 2019.

    28. On November 6, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau held a symposium on Section 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Act. Section 1071 requires the Bureau to centralize the collection of small business lending data and make that data public. It also requires the collection of new data including the race and gender of the small business owner. Historically, the collection of small business lending data has been spread across a number of federal agencies, has not been comprehensive, and has not been readily available to the public.

    October 2019

    1. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has issued a rule imposing a special measure against Iran as a jurisdiction of primary money laundering concern in accordance with Section 311 of the USA Patriot Act. This rule prohibits U.S. financial institutions from opening or maintaining a correspondent account on behalf of an Iranian financial institution and prohibits U.S. institutions from processing transactions involving Iranian financial institutions.

    2. The three prudential banking agencies, along with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, announced that they are joining the Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN).

      The agencies explained that they have taken proactive steps in recent years to enhance regulatory clarity and understanding for all stakeholders and promote early identification of emerging regulatory opportunities, challenges, and risks. They have concluded that participation in the GFIN will further these objectives and enhance their abilities to encourage responsible innovation in the financial services industry both in the U.S. and abroad. The regulators stated that participation in international organizations such as GFIN helps U.S. financial regulators represent the interest and needs of the U.S. and its financial services stakeholders.

    3. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued “Branches and Relocations,” “Charter,” “Federal Branches and Agencies,” and “General Policies and Procedures” booklets of the Comptroller’s Licensing Manual. These revised booklets streamline licensing processes to reflect that the National Historic Preservation Act and the National Environmental Policy Act do not apply to the approval of banking activities.
    4. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) are seeking public comment on the agencies’ use of the Uniform Financial Institutions Rating System, also known as the CAMELS rating system. The agencies are seeking comment on the consistency of ratings assigned under the CAMELS system, as well as how the agencies employ the system in enforcement actions and in reviewing bank applications.

    5. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has announced that Blake Paulson will become the next Senior Deputy Comptroller for Midsize and Community Bank Supervision. In this role, Mr. Paulson will oversee the team of more than 1,500 employees responsible for supervising approximately 1,100 community and mid-size national banks and federal associations in the U.S. The OCC said that Mr. Paulson will also serve on the OCC’s Executive Committee and on various governance committees that oversee critical agency functions and help align its activity to its strategic goals and objectives.

    6. The Federal Reserve Board has released the results of a survey of senior financial officers at banks about their strategies and practices for managing reserve balances. The FRB said the survey is sued to obtain information about deposit pricing and behavior, bank liability management, the provision of financial services, and reserve management strategies and practices. The survey was conducted between August 6, 2019 and August 20, 2019.

    7. On October 16, 2019 the Financial Accounting Standards Board formally extended the implementation timeframe of the current expected credit loss standard for certain financial institutions. This delay had been proposed earlier this year and will apply to small reporting companies, non-SEC public companies and private companies.

    8. The banking agencies have issued a notice requesting comment on ways to modify the current requirements for reporting data on loans to small businesses and small farms in the Call Report so that the reported data better reflect lending to these U.S. business sectors.

      As part of a study of the effect of regulations on small business lending, the Government Accountability Office reviewed the data currently collected on Call Report Schedule RC-C, Part II, Loans to Small Businesses and Small Farms. After summarizing its findings, the GAO recommended that the agencies reevaluate, and modify as needed, the requirements for the data institutions report in the Call Report to better reflect lending to small businesses. 

    9. On October 17, 2019, the three federal banking agencies, jointly with the National Credit Union Administration, issued for public comment a proposed Interagency Policy Statement on Allowances for Credit Losses. The proposed policy statement is intended to promote consistency in the interpretation and application of FASB’s credit losses accounting standard, which introduces CECL methodology.
    10. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has issued a final rule implementing section 401 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act by: (1) raising the stress testing requirement threshold from $10 billion to $250 billion; (2) revising the frequency of required stress tests; and, (3) reducing the number of required stress testing scenarios from three to two. 

    11. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) have issued a final rule amending the resolution plan rule implementing section 165(d) of the Dodd-Frank Act. The agencies explain that this final rule is intended to address amendments to the Dodd-Frank Act made by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act and reflect improvements to the rule identified over the more than seven years since the rule was adopted.
    12. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a final rule extending for two years the current temporary threshold for collecting and reporting data about open-end lines of credit under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. The final rule also clarifies partial exemptions from certain HMDA requirements that Congress added to the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.
    13. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced that it will establish a taskforce to examine ways to harmonize and modernize federal consumer financial laws. The Taskforce on Federal Consumer Financial Law will examine the existing legal and regulatory environment facing consumers and financial services providers and provide recommendations for ways to improve and strengthen consumer financial laws and regulations.
    14. The Federal Reserve Board has finalized rules that tailor its regulations for domestic and foreign banks to more closely match their risk profiles.  The FRB said this action will reduce compliance requirements for firms with less risk while maintaining the most stringent requirements for the largest and most complex banks.
    15. The federal banking agencies, along with the Commodities Futures Trading Commission and the Securities and Exchange Commission, announced that they have finalized revisions to simplify compliance requirements relating to the “Volcker Rule”.  As required by statute, the Volcker Rule generally prohibits banking entities from engaging in proprietary trading or investing in or sponsoring hedge funds or private equity funds.

    16. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued a final rule amending the agency’s stress testing rule in order to achieve consistency with section 401 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. The final rule revises the minimum threshold for national banks and federal savings associations to conduct stress tests from $10 billion to $250 billion. The final rule also revises the frequency by which certain national banks and federal savings associations are required to conduct stress tests, reduces the number of required stress testing scenarios from three to two, and makes certain additional technical changes to the stress testing requirements.

    17. The federal banking agencies have issued a joint final rule increasing the threshold for residential real estate transactions requiring an appraisal from $250,000 to $400,000.  The appraisal threshold was last changed in 1994.  Given price appreciation in residential real estate transactions since that time, the agencies believe that this change will provide burden relief without posing a threat to the safety and soundness of regulated institutions.

    18. In a recent speech addressing the future of banking, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Chairman Jelena McWilliams observed that current predictions about how technology could transform the banking industry fall into a handful of broad categories that will affect how fintechs and banks partner in the future. These include:  digitization, data access and open banking, machine learning/artificial intelligence, and personalization.

    19. At a recent Federal Reserve System-sponsored conference entitled “Community Banking in the 21st Century”, Federal Reserve Governor Michelle Bowman delivered formal remarks regarding her views on the forces influencing the future of community banking. She began by observing that both community bankers and policymakers want to better understand how technology, competition, regulation, and other factors are driving decision-making, consolidation, and other challenges and opportunities that are shaping community banking.

    20. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued updates to the “Bank Supervision Process”, “Community Bank Supervision”, “Federal Branches and Agencies Supervision”, and “Large Bank Supervision” booklets of the Comptroller’s Handbook

    21. On October 3, 2019 Federal Reserve Board Vice Chair for Supervision and Chair of the Financial Stability Board Randal Quarles spoke to the European Banking Federation’s European Banking Summit about the FSB’s activities over the 10 years since its creation and provided an overview of future activities.
    22. The federal banking agencies have finalized updates to rules restricting the ability of a director or other management official to serve at more than one depository institution or depository institution holding company. The agencies said these updates will provide relief for community banks that have $10 billion or less in total assets.
    23. On October 1, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released its bank supervision operating plan for fiscal year 2020. The OCC said this plan provides the foundation for policy initiatives and for supervisory strategies as applied to individual institutions, branches, and technology service providers. The OCC advised that OCC staff members will use this plan to guide their supervisory priorities, planning, and resource allocations.

    September 2019

    1. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced that it will host a series of listening sessions regarding its supervisory appeals and dispute resolution processes for FDIC-supervised institutions.  The FDIC said these sessions will offer an opportunity for bankers and other interested parties to provide individual input and recommendations regarding these processes, as well as to provide individual suggestions regarding the role of the Office of the Ombudsman in assisting in resolving disagreements.

    2. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued its August 2019 Consumer Credit Trends Report, describing how the volume and types of bankruptcy filings have changed throughout the period 2001-2018.  The report analyzes data from the Bureau’s Consumer Credit Panel, a nationally representative sample of approximately five million de-identified credit records maintained by one of the three nationwide credit reporting companies.  The report focuses on consumers who filed for Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy between 2001 and 2018.
    3. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued supplemental “Questions and Answers” (Q&As) to aid organizing groups in developing applications for deposit insurance. The Q&As note that applications for deposit insurance do not need to identify a specific physical location of the proposed institution’s main office at the time of submission. Information is also provided regarding the application and publication requirements. The proposed CEO must be identified at the time of filing; however, other senior officers may be identified later in the process.

    4. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2019-43 to remind banks of the new registration requirement for appraisal management companies (AMCs).  This new requirement, contained in the June 2015 interagency final rule setting forth minimum requirements for AMCs, became effective on August 10, 2019.  Under this new requirement, AMCs must register with the state or states in which they do business and must be subject to state supervision.  Unregistered AMCs are prohibited by federal law from providing appraisal management services to financial institutions for consumer credit transactions secured by a consumer’s principal dwelling.

    5. The federal banking agencies have issued a final rule permitting insured depository institutions and depository institution holding companies not subject to the advanced approaches capital rule to implement the Capital Simplification Final Rule on January 1, 2020, rather than April 1, 2020, as initially provided.  Consistent with this approach, the transitions provisions of the regulatory capital rule are being amended to provide that banking organizations not subject to the advanced approaches capital rule will be permitted to implement the Capital Simplification Final Rule as of its revised effective date in the quarter beginning January 1, 2020, or to wait until the quarter beginning April 1, 2020.
    6. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued a final rule to amend the FDIC’s deposit insurance assessment regulations to apply the community bank leverage ratio (CBLR) framework to the deposit insurance assessment system.  The primary objective of the final rule is to incorporate the CBLR framework into the current risk-based deposit insurance assessment system in a manner that maximizes regulatory relief for small institutions and maintains fair and appropriate pricing of deposit insurance.

    7. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has published a Notice of Proposed Rescission identifying four FDIC-only Statements of Policy that the agency has determined to be outdated and no longer relevant.
    8. The federal banking agencies have approved for issuance an interagency final rule that would provide for a simple measure of capital adequacy for certain community banking organizations.  This rule implements Section 201 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. 

    9. The federal banking agencies, along with the Farm Credit Administration and the Federal Housing Finance Agency, are issuing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking titled “Margin and Capital Requirements for Covered Swap Entities.”
    10. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced it will continue the publication of consumer complaints, data fields and narrative descriptions through the Bureau’s Consumer Complaint Database.  The Bureau said it also is making several enhancements to the information available to users of the database.  The enhancements include:  modified disclaimers to provide better context to the published data; integrating financial information and resources into the complaint process to help address questions and better inform consumers before they submit a compliant; and information to assist consumers who wish to contact the financial service provider to get answers to their specific questions.  The Bureau said it is also working to provide further enhancements.

    11. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has released an updated No-Action Letter (NAL) Policy, aimed at providing a mechanism through which the Bureau may more effectively carry out its mission and facilitate compliance with consumer financial laws. The Bureau said it believes the No-Action Letters issued pursuant to the policy will benefit consumers, entities that offer or provide consumer financial products and services, and the public interest more generally. The No-Action Letters are aimed to provide increased regulatory certainty through a statement that the Bureau will not bring a supervisory or enforcement action against a company for providing a product or service under certain facts and circumstances. The CFPB said this new policy improves on the Bureau’s 2016 NAL Policy by having, among other things, a more streamlined review process focusing on the consumer benefits and risks of the product or service in question.
    12. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued its Compliance Assistance Sandbox (CAS) Policy, which the Bureau said will enable testing of a financial product or service where there is regulatory uncertainty.  The Bureau explained that, under this policy, after the CFPB evaluates the product or service for compliance with relevant law, an approved applicant that complies in good faith with the terms of the approval will have a “safe harbor” from liability for specified conduct during the testing period.  The Bureau said that approvals under the CAS Policy will provide protection from liability under the Truth in Lending Act, the Electronic Fund Transfer Act, and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.
    13. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a Trial Disclosure Program (TDP) Policy that allows entities seeking to improve consumer disclosures to conduct in-market testing of alternative disclosures for a limited time upon permission by the Bureau. The TDP Policy will provide certain legal protections allowing entities to conduct trail disclosure programs.
    14. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced the launch of the American Consumer Financial Innovation Network, an effort to enhance coordination among federal and state regulators to facilitate financial innovation.
    15. On September 5, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued Second Quarter 2019 call report data revealing a 4.1 percent increase in banking industry net income from the Second Quarter 2018. This increase was led by higher net interest income. The FDIC reported that almost 60 percent of all institutions reported a year-over-year increase in net income and less than 4 percent of institutions were unprofitable. Average return on assets remained stable at 1.38 percent.
    16. The Federal Reserve Board has invited public comment on a proposal to establish capital requirements for certain insurance companies supervised by the FRB. The FRB said the proposal builds on existing stat-based insurance standards, while also establishing minimum capital requirements that the FRB cites as specific to the business of insurance.

    17. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced that it will hold a symposium on behavioral law and economics. The symposium, “Behavioral Economics and Consumer Financial Services Policy”, will be held on September 19, 2019 at 9:00 AM ET.

    18. Recently, RMA received a member inquiry seeking further clarification regarding high volatility commercial real estate acquisition, development, and construction (HVCRE ADC) definitions. This question arose as a result of the “exclusion” provisions for HVCRE that were included in Section 214 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act passed in May 2018, and the subsequent proposed rulemaking issued in September 2018 and modified in July 2019.
    19. Recently, RMA received a member inquiry seeking further clarification regarding the banking agencies’ 2013 Leveraged Lending Guidance. In 2014, the agencies issued Frequently Asked Questions regarding this guidance and included the statement that “leveraged lending multiples should be calculated at origination based on committed debt, including additional debt that the loan agreement may permit”. The RMA member questioned whether there was flexibility in the leverage calculation as it relates to certain scenarios, and provided some examples.

    August 2019

    1. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council has issued a statement emphasizing the benefits of using a standardized approach to assess and improve institution cybersecurity preparedness. The FFIEC notes that firms adopting a standardized approach are better able to track their progress over time, and share information and best practices with other financial institutions and with regulators.

    2. Representatives from six federal agencies will discuss a variety of fair lending topics during a Fair Lending Interagency Webinar, scheduled for Tuesday, October 1, 2019 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM ET.

    3. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has released it fourth biennial report on the state of the credit card market for the period 2017-2018. The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act requires the CFPB to issue the report every two years.
    4. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is updating its Risk Management Manual of Examination Policies to incorporate a new section entitled “Risk-Focused, Forward-Looking Safety and Soundness Supervision”. The FDIC says this section describes the agency’s long-standing philosophy and methods for supervising institutions by focusing on the areas presenting the greatest risks. This new section has been included in the new Part VI of the manual titled “Appendix:  Examination Processes and Tools”, and describes communication and risk-tailoring principles followed during safety and soundness examination activities.

    5. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council has announced the availability of data on mortgage lending transactions at 5,683 financial institutions covered by the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA). The data released are loan-level HMDA data covering 2018 lending activity that were submitted on or before August 7, 2019.

    6. The Task Force on Consumer Compliance of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council has adopted revised interagency examination procedures for the Flood Disaster Protection Act (FDPA). These revised procedures reflect the amendments to the regulations regarding loans in areas having special flood hazards to implement the private flood insurance provisions of the Biggert-Waters Act.

    7. The federal banking agencies will jointly host a webinar to clarify the use of model risk management by large institutions for model-based processes employed in their CECL frameworks.  The webinar, “Ask the Regulators:  Applying Model Risk Management to CECL Models at Large Banks”, is scheduled for Tuesday, September 3, 2019 from 2:00 PM to 3:00 PM ET.
    8. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has issued an advisory to financial institutions on illicit financial schemes related to the trafficking of fentanyl and other synthetic opioids. FinCEN said the advisory will assist financial institutions in detecting and reporting suspicious activity, making it harder and more costly for criminals to commit these crimes, hide and use their illicit money, and continue fueling the opioid epidemic. 

    9. The banking agencies have approved a final rule that increases the major assets prohibition thresholds of the Depository Institution Management Interlocks Act (DIMA). This increase raises the current major assets prohibition thresholds from $1.5 billion and $2.5 billion in total assets, respectively, to a single threshold amount of $10 billion for both institutions.
    10. The federal banking agencies have authorized for publication a proposed Interagency Policy Statement on Allowances for Credit Losses. The statement is being proposed in response to changes in the accounting for credit losses under U.S. GAAP as promulgated by the Financial Accounting Standards Board as set forth in FASB Accounting Standards Update No. 2016-13 and subsequent updates (Topic 326, Financial Instruments – Credit Losses).
    11. The Board of Directors of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has authorized for publication a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would amend the deposit insurance assessment regulations that govern the use of small bank credits and one-time assessment credits awarded to insured institutions. Under the current rule, when the minimum reserve ratio of the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) reaches 1.38 percent, insured institutions with assets below $10 billion will be awarded small bank credits for a portion of their deposit insurance assessments that contributed to the growth in the DIF from 1.15 percent to 1.35 percent.

    12. The Board of Directors of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has authorized for publication a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to amend the agency’s rules relating to interest rate restrictions that apply to less-than-well-capitalized insured depository institutions. The FDIC is proposing to amend its methodology for calculating the national rate and national rate cap for specific deposit products.

    13. The federal banking agencies have adopted a final rule that increases the threshold level at or below which appraisals are not required for residential real estate transactions. The previous threshold level of $250,000 has now been raised to $400,000. For residential real estate transactions exempted from the appraisal requirement as a result of the revised threshold, regulated institutions must obtain an evaluation of the real property collateral that is consistent with safe and sound banking practices.

    14. On August 15, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued an update to the Bank Accounting Advisory Series (BAAS). The BAAS covers a variety of topics and promotes consistent application of accounting standards among national banks and federal associations.
    15. On August 15, 2019 the Financial Accounting Standards Board issued a formal proposal to delay the implementation of the Current Expected Credit Loss standard until January 2023 for:  small reporting companies (as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission); non-SEC public companies; and, private companies. Larger public companies must still comply by January 2020.

    16. The Federal Reserve Board (FRB) has announced that the Federal Reserve Banks will develop a new round-the-clock real-time payment and settlement service, called FedNow Service, to support faster payments in the U.S. The FRB said the rapid evolution of technology presents a pivotal opportunity for it and the payment industry to modernize the nation’s payment system and establish a safe and efficient foundation for the future.

    17. The Federal Reserve Board has released the results of its July 2019 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices, which focused on changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans over the previous three-month period.

    18. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has issued Mortgagee Letter 2019-11, announcing a reduction in the maximum loan-to-value ratio and combined maximum loan-to-value ratio on cash-out refinance mortgages from 85 percent to 80 percent. HUD states that this change is effective for case numbers assigned on or after September 1, 2019.
    19. August 02, 2019

      On July 31, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released an update to its Frequently Asked Questions regarding TILA-RESPA integrated disclosures. This update addresses questions about providing a Loan Estimate to consumers, and focuses on the obligation of a creditor to issue a Loan Estimate once the six items of information specified in the TRID rule’s definition of “application” are provided by a consumer.

    20. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2019-39 to inform its supervised institutions about current guidelines for requesting approval to be evaluated under the Community Reinvestment Act using the strategic plan option or to request approval to amend an approved CRA strategic plan. This bulletin rescinds OCC Bulletin 1996-11, “Community Reinvestment Act:  Guidelines for Approval for a Strategic Plan & Wholesale or Limited Purpose Institution”, and Office of Thrift Supervision CEO Memo 268, “Strategic Plan and Wholesale/Limited Purpose Designations Under the CRA”.

    21. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has reopened the comment period for specific aspects of its proposed rule to amend Regulation C. In its May 2019 Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, the Bureau proposed amendments to Regulation C relating to the coverage thresholds for reporting data on closed-end mortgage loans and open-end lines of credit, and partial exemptions under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA). To facilitate the potential revisions of the thresholds that the Bureau proposed would take effect on January 1, 2020, the CFPB used a 30-day comment period, which ended on June 12, 2019.
    22. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2019-40 to inform national banks, federal associations, and federal branches of foreign banking organizations subject to the Community Reinvestment Act about guidelines for requesting a designation as a wholesale or limited purpose bank for CRA purposes, or for requesting confirmation of its exemption as a special purpose bank under CRA regulations. This bulletin rescinds and replaces an attachment to OCC Bulletin 1996-11, “Community Reinvestment Act:  Guidelines for Requesting Designation as a Wholesale or Limited-Purpose Institution”.

    23. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced 2020 changes in the dollar thresholds for Regulation Z provisions dictated by various statutory requirements. These thresholds are based on changes to the Consumer Price Index and become effective on January 1, 2020.
    24. On July 31, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced realignment of staff to create two new units, consolidating bank supervision support, risk analysis, and oversight of national trust banks and service providers.

    25. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has published its 2019 Risk Review, an annual publication highlighting emerging risks and exposures in the banking system. This issue of Risk Review provides a summary of conditions in the U.S. economy, financial markets, and banking industry.  It also presents key risks to banks in two broad categories: credit risk and market risk.  The credit risk areas discussed are agriculture, commercial real estate, energy, housing, leveraged lending and corporate debt, and nonbank lending. The market risk areas discussed are interest rate risk and deposit competition, and liquidity.

    26. The Financial Stability Board (FSB) has published a technical review of the implementation of the Total Loss-Absorbing Capacity (TLAC) Standard for Global Systemically Important Banks (G-SIBs) in resolution. The TLAC standard is intended to promote financial stability by providing confidence that G-SIBs have appropriate capacity to absorb losses and, if necessary, to achieve an orderly resolution and to maintain the continuity of critical functions. Instruments that count as TLAC need to be written down or converted into equity to recapitalize the G-SIB as it goes through resolution and, therefore, must not be vulnerable to legal challenges. Securities eligible to be held as TLAC include common equity (to a maximum of 67 percent), subordinated debt and some senior debt.

    July 2019

    1. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking feedback relating to the expiration of the temporary qualified mortgage provisions applicable to certain mortgage loans eligible for purchase or guarantee by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, in the Bureau’s Ability to Repay/Qualified Mortgage (ATM/QM) Rule. This provision, referred to as the “GSE patch” is scheduled to expire no later than January 10, 2021.

    2. The OCC has announced that Beverly Cole, currently Deputy Comptroller for Compliance Supervision, will become Deputy Comptroller of the Northeastern District. In this role, Ms. Cole will oversee more than 300 community banks and federal associations in the Northeastern District.

    3. On July 26, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced several resolution plan actions, including completion of evaluations of 2018 resolution plans for 82 foreign banks and extending the deadline for the next resolution plans for these firms - as well as 15 domestic banks - until July 1, 2021. The agencies said the extensions will give these banks additional time to prepare their plans in light of resolution plan rule changes proposed by the agencies in April 2019.

    4. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2019-37 to inform its regulated institutions of sound fraud risk management principles. The OCC explains this booklet will supplement other agency and interagency issuances on corporate and risk governance.

    5. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2019-36 to remind bankers and examiners that real estate and mortgage lending activities are subject to specific regulatory standards and guidelines. It advises that banks originating mortgage loans using asset disposition underwriting (ADU) should develop and implement policies, processes, and control systems for ADU in a manner consistent with safe and sound banking practices set forth in existing regulations. These polices and processes should align with banks’ overall business plans and strategies.

    6. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued a fully revised “Corporate and Risk Governance” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. This booklet was also reorganized for clarity. Additionally, certain sections of the examination procedures were removed and replaced with cross-references to more comprehensive examination procedures in other booklets.

    7. On July 23, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation released the public sections of eight large domestic firms’ resolution plans, as required by the Dodd-Frank Act. Resolution plans describe a company’s strategy for rapid and orderly resolution under bankruptcy. These eight firms were required to submit plans by July 1, 2019.

    8. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has updated its Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan for the fiscal period 2019-2022. The CFPB said this plan guides the Bureau’s efforts in promoting diversity and inclusion in its workforce, with suppliers, and among regulated entities. The new plan includes a strategy to maintain a comprehensive equal employment opportunity compliance program and a diversity and inclusion program, including programs focused on minority and women inclusion.

    9. On July 22, 2019 the federal banking agencies, the National Credit Union Administration, and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network issued a joint statement on risk-focused Bank Secrecy Act/anti-money laundering supervision. The statement is intended to improve transparency regarding the agencies’ risk-focused approach used for planning and performing BSA/AML examinations and does not establish new requirements.

    10. The Financial Accounting Standards Board has voted to delay implementation of the current expected credit loss standard (CECL) until January 2023 for small reporting companies (as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission), non-SEC public companies and private companies. For larger public companies, the CECL implementation date will remain January 2020. For all entities, FASB will continue to permit early adoption.

    11. In a series of separate meetings held recently in Washington, DC, RMA President Nancy Foster discussed current risk issues of mutual concern with senior officials from the FDIC, OCC and CFPB. Representing the FDIC and OCC in these meetings were senior supervisory policy and risk officials; the CFPB meeting involved a one-on-one discussion between Ms. Foster and CFPB Director Kathleen Kraninger.
    12. The federal banking agencies will jointly host a webinar on revisions to the framework for margin requirements for non-centrally cleared derivatives as adopted by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) and the International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO). Officers and employees of all insured depository institutions subject to margin requirements are invited to participate in this event; however, the webinar will be targeted at community bankers who engage in non-centrally cleared derivatives with covered swap entities subject to margin requirements.

    13. On July 17, 2019 the Financial Accounting Standards Board issued a second Q&A document that addresses more than a dozen frequently asked questions regarding CECL. The document covers areas that include:  use of historical loss information; making reasonable and supportable forecasts, and the reversion to historical loss information.

    14. In remarks delivered to the Exchequer Club on July 17, 2019, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathleen Kraninger observed that Congress gave significant powers and tools to the CFPB Director to protect consumers. She said these tools include education, regulation, supervision, and enforcement. She assured the audience that, as Director, she intends to use every tool to carry out the Bureau’s mission, with the primary focus being the prevention of harm to consumers.

    15. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has released a report revealing that 28 percent of consumers with a credit report have at least one debt in collection by third-party debt collectors.    The report, covering the period 2004-2018, is drawn from the Bureau’s Consumer Credit Panel, a nationally representative sample of approximately 5 million de-identified credit records maintained by one of the three nationwide credit reporting companies. Just under 900 third-party debt collectors furnished information that formed the basis of this report.

    16. The National Credit Union Administration has finalized a rule that raises the threshold at which credit unions must obtain appraisals for commercial real estate transactions from $250,000 to $1 million. This places the new credit union threshold level out of step with the federal banking agency regulations, which set the CRE appraisal threshold for banks at $500,000. Informally, federal bank regulators have expressed frustration with the NCUA’s actions regarding this matter, emphasizing their continued belief that sound practices dictate the need for appraisals for transactions above the $500.000 threshold.

    17. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued an updated advisory urging financial institutions to report to appropriate local, state, and federal authorities whenever they suspect that an older adult is the target or victim of financial exploitation. The Bureau also recommended that financial institutions file Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) with the federal government when they suspect elder financial exploitation (EFE). The advisory contains voluntary best practices to help financial institutions prevent and respond to EFE.

    18. The federal banking agencies have announced that they will not take action related to restrictions under the Volcker Rule for certain foreign funds for an additional two years. The agencies stated that they had consulted with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission on this matter.

    19. At a recent research conference on stress testing sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chair for Supervision Randal Quarles reviewed the history and development of supervisory stress testing since the first stress test results were released under the Supervisory Capital Assessment Program in May 2009. He characterized these initial stress test results as a turning point that led to the recovery from the Great Recession that began in July 2009, as the financial system came back to life and then steadily strengthened.
    20. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has posted sections of its Applications Procedures Manual to its web site to provide greater transparency regarding the agency’s internal processes. This manual provides direction to agency professional staff assigned to review and process applications, notices, and other requests submitted to the FDIC. The agency stated that this is the first in a series of releases that will comprise the complete manual, and each subsequent release will include multiple sections governing specific filing types.

    21. On July 9, 2019, the federal banking agencies issued a final rule that simplifies several requirements contained in the agencies’ regulatory capital rules. These simplifications apply to banking organizations that do not use the “advanced approaches” capital framework – generally, firms with less than $250 billion in total consolidated assets and less than $10 billion in total foreign exposure.
    22. The federal banking agencies announced that they have adopted a final rule to exclude community banks from the Volcker Rule, consistent with provisions of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. Under the final rule, which remains unchanged from the proposed rule, community banks with $10 billion or less in total consolidated assets and total trading assets and liabilities of 5 percent or less of total consolidated assets are excluded from the Volcker Rule.

    23. On July 9, 2019 the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston held a research conference entitled: “Stress Testing: A Discussion and Review”. In opening remarks at this conference Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell said the Fed is strongly committed to stress testing as a cornerstone of the agency’s bank supervisory and financial stability missions. Mr. Powell characterized stress testing as “perhaps the most successful supervisory innovation of the post-crisis era”. But he advised that stress testing will need to evolve in the years ahead in order to keep pace with the ever-changing financial system if they are to continue to serve their critical function.

    24. On May 24, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a final rule to allow federal savings associations with assets of $20 billion or less to elect to operate as “covered savings associations”. An institution making such an election is able to engage in national bank powers.

    25. The Federal Reserve Board announced that, as of July 1, 2019, aggregate consolidated liabilities of U.S. financial companies equaled $20,664,262,842,000.  The FRB is required by the Dodd-Frank Act (Act) to make this annual determination, and the Act prohibits a financial company from combining with another company if the resulting company’s liabilities would exceed 10 percent of the aggregate consolidated liabilities of all financial companies.

    June 2019

    1. On June 27, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced an extension of the comment period on its Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) regarding Home Mortgage disclosure Act data collection. The ANPR, issued on May 2, 2019, solicits comment on certain data points in the Bureau’s October 2015 final rule that were added to Regulation C or revised to require additional information, and on coverage of certain business- or commercial-purpose loans. The ANPR comment period will be extended from July 8, 2019 to October 15, 2019.

    2. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has announced that it will centralize the supervision and resolution activities for the largest banks and complex financial institutions in a new “Division of Complex Institution Supervision and Resolution” (CISR). The FDIC explained that this
    3. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will co-host a webinar to outline strategies to address and prevent elder financial abuse. The agencies said the webinar will focus on the benefits of appropriate collaboration between financial institutions and law enforcement regarding elder abuse, and will provide financial institutions with resources and approaches to develop strategic relationships. 

    4. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has released the OCC Mortgage Metrics Report, First Quarter 2019, reflecting that 96.2 percent of mortgages included in the report were current and performing at the end of the quarter. This performance measure compares favorably with the 95.6 percent performance rate one year ago.
    5. On June 27, 2019 the Financial Accounting Standards Board issued an Exposure Draft entitled:  “Codification Improvements to Topic 326, Financial Instruments – Credit Losses”. The FASB notes in this Exposure Draft that it has an ongoing project for improving Accounting Standards Update No. 2016-13, Financial Instruments – Credit Losses (Topic 326):  Measurement of Credit Losses on Financial Instruments. FASB said it decided to issue this proposed update to Topic 326 to increase stakeholders’ awareness of the proposed amendments and to expedite the improvements. FASB said these proposed amendments include items brought to its attention by stakeholders.
    6. The Federal Reserve Board released the results of the 2019 Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR), advising that it did not object to the capital plans of the 18 firms subject to the review, although it is requiring one firm to address limited weaknesses identified from the review. Overall, the FRB concluded that the nation’s largest banks have strong capital levels and virtually all are now meeting supervisory expectations for capital planning.

    7. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Reserve Board have jointed published amendments to Regulation CC that implement a statutory requirement to adjust for inflation the amount of funds depository institutions must make available to their customers.  Regulation CC implements the Expedited Funds Availability Act of 1987 (EFA Act). The Dodd-Frank Act amended the EFA Act to grant the CFPB and the FRB joint rulemaking authority for funds availability schedules, disclosure policies, payment of interest, and other EFA Act provisions implemented by Regulation CC.
    8. On June 21, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board released the results of the 2019 round of supervisory stress tests, concluding that the largest and most complex U.S. banks have strong capital levels that would allow them to stay well above their minimum requirements after being tested against a severe hypothetical recession.
    9. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued OCC Bulletin 2019-28, “Risk Management Guidance for Higher-Loan-to-Value Lending Activities in Communities Targeted for Revitalization”. This Bulletin encourages banks interested in making higher-LTV loans in communities targeted for revitalization to refer to the Bulletin’s core lending principles and discuss plans to offer such loan products with their OCC supervisory office before implementation.

    10. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued revisions to the “Background Investigations” and “Changes in Directors and Senior Executive Officers” booklets of the Comptroller’s Licensing Manual, to incorporate updated procedures and requirements for electronic fingerprinting. The OCC advised that it will begin using electronic fingerprinting to facilitate background checks performed in connection with applications and notices submitted to the OCC, including applications for charters, notices of acquisition of control, and notices to replace board members or senior management in certain institutions. This new process will begin in July 2019.
    11. The banking agencies have released the 2019 list of distressed or underserved nonmetropolitan middle-income geographies, where revitalization or stabilization activities are eligible to receive CRA consideration under the community development definition. These geographies are designated by the agencies in accordance with their CRA regulations, and the criteria for designation can be found on the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) web site here.

    12. The federal banking agencies have issued a final rule aimed at streamlining regulatory reporting requirements for small institutions. This rule implements Section 205 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, and will permit insured institutions with total assets of less than $5 billion to file the most streamlined version of the Call Report (FFIEC 051 Call Report). The agencies state that this rule would reduce by approximately one-third the number of existing data items reportable for the first and third calendar quarters.

    13. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued an advisory regarding potential confusion between FDICConnect.com and the FDIC-run web site, FDICConnect.gov. The FDICConnect.com web site promotes itself as a provider of FDIC pass-through deposit insurance for bank deposits. The FDIC is advising the public that FDICConnect.com is in no way affiliated with the FDIC.
    14. In a speech delivered on June 12, 2019, FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams said that the concept of financial services innovation is not new. However, she said what is new today is the speed and impact of technological innovation in and on banking, and the potential for technology to disrupt not just a few institutions, but the concept of banking as we know it. She pointed out that, for the most part, regulators are trying to fit these new developments into last century’s regulatory regime – tinkering around the edges of innovation without fundamentally changing the way regulators look at the regulatory framework and innovation.
    15. On July 13, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board published “Perspectives from Main Street:  Stakeholder Feedback on Modernizing the Community Reinvestment Act”. This document is a summary of feedback the FRB received from bankers and community groups during a series of 29 roundtable discussions on the current state of, and potential revisions to, CRA.

    16. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued its inaugural edition of Consumer Compliance supervisory Highlights. This publication serves as an effort to enhance transparency regarding the FDIC’s consumer compliance supervisory activities. This edition includes a high-level overview of consumer compliance issues identified during 2018 through the agency’s supervision process.
    17. On June 6, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau finalized a rule extending the compliance date for the mandatory underwriting provisions of its Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loan final rule. This new rule delays the August 19, 2019 compliance date for mandatory underwriting provisions of the Payday Rule by 15 months, to November 19, 2020. The final rule also makes certain corrections to address several clerical and non-substantive errors the Bureau has identified in other aspects of the Rule.

    18. In a June 3, 2019 speech, Federal Reserve Vice Chair for Supervision Randal Quarles offered a reminder that officials have, since 2014, warned that LIBOR could become unstable. He said some have not heeded these warnings, but the risks warned about have now materialized. Mr. Quarles said his message is that the LIBOR warnings should be taken seriously, as the regulator of LIBOR has said it is a matter of how LIBOR will end rather than if it will end.

    19. In a June 4, 2019 speech delivered to the Community Development Bankers Association Peer Forum, FDIC Chairman McWilliams observed that community banks are intertwined in a symbiotic relationship with their communities. She said the role of regulatory agencies is not to stand in the way of those relationships, but to encourage them. Chairman McWilliams said she is currently half-way through a 50-state listening tour involving local bankers, state supervisors, consumer groups, and FDIC employees.

    20. The Federal Reserve Board is seeking public comment on technical, clarifying updates regarding its Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) procedures and changes to improve the efficiency of its rules governing the disclosure of confidential supervisory information (CSI).

    May 2019

    1. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has released banking industry financial performance data for the first quarter of 2019, reflecting a rise in aggregate net income of 8.7 percent from a year earlier. This increase was primarily attributable to a 6 percent increase in net interest income. Nearly two-thirds of all institutions reported annual increases in net income and less than 4 percent of institutions were unprofitable. Average return on assets increased to 1.35 percent, up from 1.28 percent a year earlier.

    2. On May 30, 2019 the federal banking agencies issued a final rule that adopts, without change, an interim final rule issued in August 2018 that amends the agencies’ liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) rules in order to treat certain municipal obligations as high-quality liquid assets (HQLA). The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act requires the agencies to treat a municipal obligation as HQLA under the LCR rule if that obligation is “liquid and readily-marketable” and “investment grade”.

    3. On May 24, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a final rule that provides more business flexibility to federal savings associations. The final rule implements section 206 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act).


    4. Advance America, Cash Advance Centers, Inc., Northstate Check Exchange, and Check Into Cash (plaintiffs) have settled a five-year old lawsuit brought against the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. The lawsuit had alleged terminations of payday lender bank accounts under “Operation Choke Point”, an effort by the U.S. Department of Justice and financial regulators to thwart fraudulent merchants by blocking their access to payment services. Plaintiffs had argued that the program had devolved into a governmental effort to rein in legal but disfavored industries by denying them bank and merchant accounts.

    5. The federal banking agencies will conduct an interagency webinar that will focus on the recently issued interagency final rule on private flood insurance. This session is free, but the agencies are requiring advance registration.

    6. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has released its Semiannual Risk Perspective for Spring 2019. The report covers risks facing national banks and federal savings associations based on data as of December 31, 2018.

    7. On May 22, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau published its Spring 2019 Agenda, which lists the regulatory matters that the Bureau reasonably anticipates considering during the period from May 1, 2019 to April 30, 2020.

    8. In remarks delivered on May 20, 2019, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell discussed the current level of business borrowing and the implications associated with increases in business debt activity. Mr. Powell began by stating that regulators and others are seeing, in business debt, a category of debt that is growing faster than the income of the borrowers even as lenders loosen underwriting standards. Likewise, much of this borrowing is being financed opaquely, outside the banking system. Mr. Powell observes that many are asking whether these developments pose a new threat to financial stability.
    9. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has announced several changes to its senior leadership and executive teams:

      Brian Johnson will serve as CFPB Deputy Director. Mr. Johnson joined the Bureau in 2017 as Senior Advisor to the Director and was named Principal Policy Director in 2018.   He has served as Acting Deputy Director since July 2018. He joined the Bureau from the House Financial Services Committee where he served in various capacities over a period of five years, including leading the policy and legislative work for the Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit Subcommittee.

    10. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued the updated “Forward” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. This booklet describes the overall organization and format of the Comptroller’s Handbook.

    11. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has issued guidance to assist in providing regulatory certainty for businesses and individuals engaged in expanding fields of financial activity. The guidance, entitled “Application of FinCEN’s Regulations to Certain Business Models Involving Convertible Virtual Currencies” (CVC), is being issued in response to questions raised by financial institutions, law enforcement, and regulators concerning the regulatory treatment of multiple variations of businesses dealing in CVCs.

    12. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a notice explaining how the agency plans to periodically review regulations under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) and to request public input. In conjunction with this notice, the Bureau has published a notice requesting public input as part of its first RFA review examining the 2009 Overdraft Rule.
    13. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is seeking comment on the economic impact of the Bureau’s 2009 Overdraft Rule. This rule was originally issued by the Federal Reserve Board, and limits the ability of financial institutions to assess overdraft fees for paying automated teller machine and one-time debit card transactions that overdraw consumers’ accounts. The rule amends Regulation E, which implements the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA). The Bureau recodified Regulation E, including the amendments made to the Overdraft Rule, in 2011 when the agency assumed rulemaking responsibility under EFTA.

    14. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to implement the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (Act). The CFPB said the proposal would provide consumers with clear protections against harassment by debt collectors and straightforward options to address or dispute debts. The proposal would set clear, bright-line limits on the number of calls debt collectors may place to reach consumers on a weekly basis; clarify how collectors may communicate lawfully using newer technologies; and require collectors to provide additional information to consumers to help them identify debts and respond to collection attempts.

    15. The FRB’s April 2019 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices addressed changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans to businesses and households over the past three months. The Fed stated that responses to the survey had been received from 73 domestic banks and 21 U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks.

    16. The Federal Reserve Board is requesting comment on potential modifications to the Federal Reserve Banks’ National Settlement Service (NSS) and Fedwire Funds Service to support enhancements to the same-day automated clearinghouse (ACH) service. The Fed also is requesting comment on corresponding changes to the Federal Reserve Policy on Payment System Risk related to a new posting time for transactions and an increased daylight overdraft fee.

    17. The Federal Housing Administration has issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for public input regarding the agency’s Single-Family Loan Sale Program. This Program has been operating under demonstration and general disposition authority whereby eligible, single-family mortgage loans assigned to FHA in exchange for claim payment and mortgage notes are sold competitively to maximize recoveries and strengthen the FHA Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. FHA is seeking public comment to improve Program practices and procedures as FHA transitions the Program from a demonstration to a permanent program. FHA explains that it will consider the comments submitted in developing a permanent program for assigning defaulted Single-Family mortgage loans to FHA and disposing of the assigned loans through loan sales.

    18. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued the “Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act” (RESPA) booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. This revised booklet replaces the similarly titled booklet issued in April 2015.

    19. The Federal Reserve Board has approved amendments to its regulations to reflect the transfer of the Fed’s rulemaking authority for the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act (SAFE Act) to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Entities that were subject to the Board’s SAFE Act rules are now subject to the Bureau’s rules.

    20. The Federal Reserve Board has issued its May 2019 Supervision and Regulation Report, summarizing banking conditions and the Fed’s supervisory and regulatory activities. In this report the Fed states that it is focused on making the current regulatory and supervisory environment more efficient, transparent, and simple and ensuring that compliance burden is minimized without compromising safety and soundness. The Fed states it has strengthened its supervisory program for large institutions, and has increased its emphasis on risk-focused examination activities for regional and community banks.
    21. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) seeking comment on possible revisions to the agency’s fiduciary regulations. The ANPR requests comment on whether the OCC should update the regulatory definition of “fiduciary capacity” to make it more consistent with recent developments under state laws. It also seeks comment on the potential addition of new provisions to OCC regulations to establish certain basic requirements for non-fiduciary custody activities of national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches and agencies, which the OCC says are not currently addressed by specific rules.
    22. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced a redesigned Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data and research page. The Bureau said that from this page the public can read current and past research using HMDA, download loan-level datasets, get information about compliance, and access other HMDA resources.

    23. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would raise the coverage thresholds for collecting and reporting data about closed-end mortgage loans and open-end lines of credit under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA). The CFPB states that this proposal would provide relief to smaller lenders from HMDA’s data reporting requirements, and would clarify partial exemptions from certain HMDA requirements that Congress added in the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. The Bureau also issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking information on the costs and benefits of reporting certain data points under HMDA.

    24. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency is seeking public comment on a proposed Innovation Pilot Program. The OCC describes the program as voluntary and designed to provide eligible entities with regulatory input early in the testing of innovative activities that could present significant opportunities or benefits to consumers, businesses, financial institutions, and communities.

    25. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has posted a factsheet addressing whether a Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure are required under the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule for transactions:

      • In which a new consumer is being added or substituted as an obligor on an existing consumer credit transaction
      • That are closed-end consumer credit transactions secured by real property or cooperative units
      • That are not reverse mortgages subject to other specific regulations

    April 2019

    1. On April 23, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced changes to policies regarding Civil Investigative Demands (CIDs) to ensure they provide more information about the potentially wrongful conduct under investigation.

    2. On April 25, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a Request for Information (RFI) on its Remittance Rule. The RFI incudes consideration of issues discussed in the Bureau’s assessment of the Rule, which examined if the Rule had been effective in achieving its goals.
    3. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has announced that it will conduct four identical live seminars on FDIC deposit insurance coverage for officers and employees between May 15 and December 9, 2019. The FDIC said that, in addition to a comprehensive overview of deposit insurance rules, the seminars will include deposit insurance coverage information on signature card requirements for joint accounts, prepaid cards, bank trade names, health savings accounts, 529 plan accounts, and 529 Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) plan accounts.

    4. The Federal Reserve Board has invited public comment on a proposal aimed to simplify and increase the transparency of the FRB’s rules for determining control of a banking organization. Generally, if a company has control over a banking organization, the company becomes subject to the FRB’s rules and regulations.

    5. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Directory Kathleen Kraninger has announced a symposia series exploring consumer protections in today’s financial services marketplace. Director Kraninger said this series is aimed at stimulating a proactive and transparent dialogue to assist the Bureau in its policy development process, including possible future rulemakings. She said that during each symposium, the Bureau will host a discussion panel of experts with a variety of viewpoints on the topic.



    6. The federal banking agencies are seeking comment on a proposal to modify a capital requirement for U.S. banking organizations predominantly engaged in custodial activities, as required by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act). The Act requires the agencies to permit certain firms – those predominantly engaged in custody, safekeeping, and asset servicing activities – to exclude qualifying deposits at central banks from their supplementary leverage ratio. The supplementary leverage ratio applies only to certain large or internationally active banking organizations.

    7. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is seeking public comment on potential modifications to its rule requiring submission of resolution plans. Modification is being considered in the following areas:  (a) creation of tiered resolution planning requirements based on institution size, complexity, and other factors: (2) revisions to the frequency and required content of plan submissions, including elimination of plan submissions for a category of smaller and less complex institutions; and (3) improvements to the process for periodic engagement between the FDIC and institutions on resolution-related matters.

    8. The Federal Reserve Board and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation have jointly issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to amend and restate the current joint resolution plan rule implementing section 165(d) of the Dodd-Frank Act (Act). The agencies state that the proposal is intended to address amendments to the Act made by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (EGRRCPA) and reflect improvements to the rule identified over the seven and one-half years since the rule was adopted.
    9. In an April 17, 2019 speech, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathleen Kraninger outlined her vision for the Bureau. In beginning her remarks, Director Kraninger observed that Congress had given significant powers and tools to the CFPB Director, including:  education; regulation; supervision; and, enforcement. She said that, as Director, she believes the best application of these tools is to focus on prevention of harm to consumers.

    10. In an April 11, 2019 speech delivered at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, Federal Reserve Board Governor Michelle Bowman discussed innovation as it relates to the business of community banking. Governor Bowman began her remarks by noting that community banks, like every other industry, are learning to adapt to the new world of rapid innovation and shifting consumer expectations. She said that, less than a decade ago, fintech lenders generated less than 1 percent of personal loans. Today, these firms originate a larger share of personal loans than banks.

    11. On April 8, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board invited public comment on a regulatory framework intended to more closely match the rules for foreign banks with the risks they pose to the U.S. financial system. The FRB stated that these proposed changes would maintain the most stringent requirements for firms with the most risk, while reducing compliance requirements for firms with less risk.

    12. In remarks delivered on April 10, 2019, FRB Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles discussed the transition from LIBOR to the risk-free rates identified by several working groups.  Mr. Quarles began by noting that, by the time of the recent financial crisis, much of the global financial system had come to rely on LIBOR. He pointed out that LIBOR was a very poorly structured rate, with contributing banks submitting quotes without any requirement of evidence of transactions or other facts to back them up, making LIBOR susceptible to manipulation.

    13. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has named Maryann Kennedy as the next Senior Deputy Comptroller for Large Bank Supervision. In this role, Ms. Kennedy will direct supervision of the largest national banks, federal branches and agencies. She will also serve as a member of the agency’s Executive Committee. The OCC said Ms. Kennedy will assume these duties later this month.

    14. On April 2, 2019, the federal banking agencies proposed a rule aimed at limiting the interconnectedness of large banking organizations and reducing the impact from failure of the largest banking organizations. The agencies said the proposal would complement other measures the banking agencies have taken to limit interconnectedness among these firms.

    15. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued Financial Institution Letter 19-2019 entitled “Technology Service Provider Contracts” that describes examiner observations regarding gaps in financial institutions’ contracts with technology service providers that may require institutions to take additional steps to manage their own business continuity and incident response.

    16. The federal financial institution regulatory agencies will host an interagency webinar focusing on the application of the Weighted-Average Remaining Maturity (WARM) method for estimating allowances for credit losses in accordance with the Current Expected Credit Losses (CECL) methodology. The event will be held in conjunction with FASB, SEC, and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors. The webinar is scheduled for April 11, 2019, from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM ET.
    17. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council has issued A Guide to HMDA Reporting:  Getting It Right for data collected in 2019 and reported in 2020. The agencies have also issued updated HMDA interagency examination procedures.

    18. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has released a series of podcasts entitled Crisis and Response:  An FDIC History, 2008-2013. The FDIC said this podcast series will give listeners a unique behind-the-scenes perspective on the crisis, with FDIC officials sharing their insights into the agency’s decision-making strategies and actions. The podcast series is organized into seven episodes.
    19. On April 3, 2019 the banking agencies jointly published additional frequently asked questions (FAQs) to assist financial institutions and examiners with the new FASB current expected credit losses methodology (CECL). The agencies published 23 FAQs in December 2016 and 14 additional questions in September 2017. The agencies are now publishing nine additional questions, updating responses to four existing questions, and adding an appendix with links to relevant resources that are available to banks to assist with implementation of CECL.

    March 2019

    1. On March 29, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced the completion of their evaluation of the 2017 resolution plans for 14 domestic banking organizations and issued their expectations for those firms’ next resolution plan submissions, which are due on or before December 31, 2019. The agencies said they did not identify any deficiencies or shortcomings in the 2017 resolution plans, which the firms would have been required to address.
    2. On March 29, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation proposed amendments to two rules in order to simplify the process for making insurance determinations in the event a bank is placed into receivership. 

    3. On March 29, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board announced the appointment of Patrick J. McClanahan as chief operating officer, effective April 29, 2019. In this position, Mr. McClanahan will be responsible for the operation of the FRB’s administrative and financial management functions, technology services, short- and long-term strategic planning, and data management. Mr. McClanahan succeeds Don Hammond, who retired earlier this year.

    4. The Task Force on Consumer Compliance of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council has developed interagency examination procedures for:

      • Truth in Lending Act (TILA), implemented by Regulation Z
      • Electronic Fund Transfer Act, implemented by Regulation E

    5. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Chairman Jelena McWilliams has announced the appointment of Nick Podsiadly as the agency’s new General Counsel. Mr. Podsiadly currently serves as Deputy General Counsel and Senior Vice President for Fifth Third Bancorp, Cincinnati, Ohio. Prior to joining Fifth Third in July 2017, he was Senior Vice President for Regulatory Policy at Regions Financial Corporation, Birmingham, Alabama. Previously, he had served as Chief Counsel at the American Bankers Association.

    6. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has announced six new members to its Advisory Committee on Community Banking. This committee provides key information and input to the FDIC on issues facing community banks, including current examination policies and procedures, credit and lending practices, deposit insurance, and regulatory compliance.
    7. On March 25, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued Bulletin 2019-15 entitled “Statement on Confidentiality” reminding OCC-supervised institutions that they are prohibited by regulation from disclosing nonpublic OCC information, including their CAMELS rating, without prior approval of the OCC (except in very limited circumstances). The Bulletin notes that any unauthorized disclosure or use of nonpublic OCC information without the express permission of the OCC may be subject to criminal penalties under federal law.

    8. On March 22, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued its OCC Mortgage Metrics Report, Fourth Quarter 2018, which revealed a slight improvement in the performance of first-lien mortgages in the federal banking system during the period. According to the OCC, 95.8 percent of mortgages included in the report were current and performing at the end of the quarter, compared to 94.5 percent one year earlier.

    9. Recently the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation rescinded and removed Part 350 of the agency’s regulations, entitled Disclosure of Financial and Other Information by FDIC Insured State Nonmember Banks. The FDIC took this action to simplify its regulations by eliminating unnecessary or redundant regulations, consistent with the objectives of Section 2222 of the Economic Growth, and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act of 1996.

    10. On March 21, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board published a report on debit card transactions in 2017, including information on volume and value, interchange fee revenue, certain issuer costs, and fraud losses. This report is the fifth in a series published every two years pursuant to section 920 of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act.
    11. On March 20, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released its annual report to Congress on the administration of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. This report highlights efforts by the CFPB and the Federal Trade Commission to stop unlawful debt collection practices, including law enforcement, education and public outreach, and policy initiatives. The CFPB reported that it has reauthorized its memorandum of understanding with the FTC that provides for coordination in enforcement, sharing of supervisory information and consumer complaints, and collaboration on consumer education.

    12. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has announced that it will hold a meeting of the Advisory Committee on Community Banking on Thursday, March 28, 2019. At this meeting, FDIC senior staff will discuss efforts regarding de novo institutions, community bank technical assistance efforts, the 2017 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households, and other current matters. Additionally, representatives from the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network will provide a briefing to the Committee.

    13. On March 21, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced enhancements to its advisory committee charters. The Bureau said these enhancements are the result of CFPB Director Kathleen Kraninger’s engagement with current and former advisory committee members during her three-month listening tour.
    14. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued the Winter 2018 edition of its Supervisory Insights publication. This publication is issued by the FDIC’s Division of Risk Management Supervision to promote sound principles and practices for bank supervision.

    15. On March 15, 2019 the three federal banking agencies, jointly with the Farm Credit Administration and the Federal Housing Finance Agency, adopted an interim final rule to ensure that qualifying swaps may be transferred from a United Kingdom (UK) entity to an affiliate in the European Union (EU) or the United States without triggering new margin requirements. The agencies explained that this action is being taken in response to the possibility of a non-negotiated withdrawal of the UK from the EU. The interim final rule applies to legacy swaps that were entered into before applicable regulatory margin requirements took effect and the agencies state that the rule is generally consistent with similar relief contemplated by international jurisdictions.

    16. The Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced that they will jointly hold two public meetings on the proposed merger of BB&T Corporation, Winston-Salem, NC, with SunTrust Banks, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. The purpose of the meetings is to collect information relating to the convenience and needs of the communities to be served, including a review of the insured depository institutions’ performance under the Community Reinvestment Act. The agencies said that they also will consider and collect information on other factors relevant to making a decision on the application, including the effects of the proposal on the stability of the U.S. banking system, the financial and managerial resources and future prospects of the companies, and competition in the relevant markets.
    17. On March 15, 2019 the Comptroller of the Currency issued the “Recovery Planning” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. The booklet explains effective recovery planning pursuant to the document entitled “OCC Guidelines Establishing Standards for Recovery Planning by Certain Large Insured National Banks, Insured Federal Savings Associations, and Insured Federal Branches”. This updated booklet replaces a similarly titled booklet issued in April 2018.
    18. In a March 12, 2019 speech delivered to the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, Federal Reserve Board Governor Lael Brainard discussed potential modifications to the Community Reinvestment Act. She characterized this goal as preserving what is working well with CRA while striving to make it better.
    19. On March 12, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced the release of the Winter 2019 edition of its Supervisory Highlights report. This edition covers Bureau supervision activities generally completed between June 2018 and November 2018, and includes examination findings in the areas of automobile loan servicing, deposits, mortgage servicing, and remittances. 

    20. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation General Counsel Charles Yi recently announced he will be leaving the agency at the end of March 2019. He has served as FDIC General Counsel since January 2015. A successor has not been named.

    21. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has unveiled new resources to help consumers understand their rights and make well-informed decisions about money. The agency has added a new online information and support center to its existing educational resources. The FDIC states that consumers can use the center to easily check the status of inquiries or complaints they have made regarding a financial institution. Also included is a new knowledge center that provides easy-to-find answers to questions about banking and lending.

    22. On March 7, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued Bulletin 2019-12 discussing key data fields that the OCC has determined examiners will typically use to test and validate the accuracy and reliability of home mortgage loan data collected beginning in 2018. The bulletin sets out the key data fields separately for banks that are required to report all of the data, as set forth in the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act rule issued in October 2015 and revised in September 2017, and for banks that qualify for a partial exemption from HMDA reporting under the interpretive and procedural rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in August 2018.

    23. On March 6, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board announced it will limit the use of the “qualitative objection” in its Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR) exercise, effective for the 2019 cycle. This change eliminates the qualitative objection for most firms due to the improvements in capital planning made by the largest firms.

    24. On March 6, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board affirmed the Countercyclical Capital Buffer (CCyB) at the current level of 0 percent. The buffer is a macroprudential tool that can be used to increase the resilience of the financial system by raising capital requirements on internationally active banking organizations when there is an elevated risk of above-normal future losses and when the banking organizations for which capital requirements would be raised by the buffer are exposed to or are contributing to this elevated risk. The FRB stated the buffer could also help moderate fluctuations in the supply of credit. The CCyB is designed to be released when economic conditions deteriorate, in order to support lending and economic activity more broadly.
    25. On March 6, 2019 the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council members issued principles to promote consistency, clarity and ease of reference for the presentation of information in agency examination reports. This Policy Statement was developed as part of the FFIEC’s Examination Modernization Project, which the FFIEC states is aimed at reducing unnecessary regulatory burden on community financial institutions. This Policy Statement will replace the 1993 Interagency Policy Statement on the Uniform Core Report of Examination, which is now rescinded.

    26. On March 6, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board invited public comment regarding whether the Board should propose amendments to it Regulation D (Reserve Requirements of Depository Institutions) to lower the rate of interest paid on excess balances (IOER) maintained at Reserve Banks by eligible institutions that hold a very large proportion of their assets in the form of balances at Reserve Banks.

    27. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced the inaugural meeting of the agency’s Subcommittee on Supervision Modernization, which was held on March 5 and 6, 2019. The FDIC states that this subcommittee was established to support the FDIC’s Advisory Committee on Community Banking by considering how the FDIC can leverage technology and refine processes to make the examination program more efficient, while managing and training a geographically dispersed workforce.

    28. On March 4, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding residential Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act) directed the Bureau to prescribe certain regulations for PACE financing.


    29. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a report entitled:  “Suspicious Activity Reports on Elder Financial Exploitation:  Issues and Trends”. This study by the CFPB analyzes the Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) filed with the federal government by financial institutions in order to determine the volume and characteristics of elder financial exploitation (EFE). The report notes that this is the first public analysis of EFE SAR filings since the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) introduced electronic filing with a designated category for “elder financial exploitation” in 2013.
    30. The FDIC has announced that the agency, jointly with Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business, has organized the “Fintech and the Future of Banking” conference, to be held at the FDIC’s Seidman Center in Arlington, VA on April 24, 2019. The conference will highlight research focused on technology’s impact on lending, financial advice, regulatory innovation, and fintech funding. The conference will open with a conversation between Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams regarding the role of financial technology and innovation in banking.

    February 2019

    1. On February 22, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued Financial Institution Letter 9-19 entitled “Prepaid Accounts Rule: Interagency Consumer Compliance Examination Procedures”. This FIL contains examination procedures to incorporate the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s amendments to Regulation E and Regulation Z. The FDIC said these procedures may prove helpful to financial institutions seeking to better understand how examiners will evaluate an institution’s compliance with these regulations.

    2. On February 21, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation released fourth quarter 2018 industry performance data showing that, in aggregate, bank net income increased by 133.4 percent from one year ago. The data reflected that this increase resulted from higher operating revenue and lower income tax expenses. Full-year 2018 net income increased by 44.1 percent from 2017. Without the benefit of the tax reform effects, full-year 2018 net income would have increased by 13.6 percent.
    3. Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting has issued a statement in support of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s proposed rule rescinding requirements that lenders make certain underwriting determinations before issuing short-term small-dollar loans. Mr. Otting said the proposal, if implemented, would allow lenders to re-enter the market with quality products and services that offer consumers better regulated, priced, and structured products.

    4. On February 15, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board extended, until March 21, the comment period for its proposed rule that would modify company-run stress testing requirements to conform to the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. Originally, comments were due by February 19, 2019.

    5. On February 15, 2019 the banking agencies extended the comment period for a proposed rule updating standards regarding how firms measure counterparty credit risk posed by derivative contracts. The proposed joint rule would provide the “standardized approach for measuring counterparty credit risk” as an alternative approach to the agencies’ current exposure methodology for calculating derivative exposure under the agencies’ regulatory capital rules.
    6. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would amend the agency’s stress testing rule. The proposal implements the requirements imposed by section 401 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act).

    7. The federal banking agencies, jointly with the Farm Credit Administration and the National Credit Union Administration, have issued a final rule to implement provisions of the biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 (Act) requiring regulated institutions to accept certain private flood insurance policies in addition to National Flood Insurance Program policies.

    8. The Federal Reserve Board and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency have each issued revisions to their datasets for use by covered institutions in the upcoming 2019 stress tests. The agencies advised that the previously released datasets contained an incorrect value for the mortgage rate in the fourth quarter 2018. The updated datasets contain the corrected data point of 4.8 percent rather than the previously published 4.6 percent mortgage rate for that quarter.
    9. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has extended the comment period related to its Request for Information on the Deposit Insurance Application Process (RFI) until March 31, 2019. As the FDIC has previously stated, this RFI is part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to enhance transparency, efficiency, and accountability.
    10. In February 11, 2019 remarks delivered to community bankers, Federal Reserve Board Governor Michelle Bowman said that the FRB and other banking agencies strive to achieve a fair balance between safety and soundness and reducing unnecessary regulatory burden. Governor Bowman said that, given the straightforward nature of community banking, regulators have an obligation to develop and refine approaches to supervision that fit the smaller size and less-complex risk profiles of these banks. She said that “If we keep our focus on appropriately tailoring regulatory requirements for community banks so they may continue to prudently thrive, then community bankers should be able to devote more resources and time to serving their customers and communities.”

    11. On February 5, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board released the scenarios banks and supervisors will use for the 2019 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR) and Dodd-Frank Act stress test exercises.

    12. On February 6, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced the issuance of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to rescind certain provisions of the agency’s 2017 rule governing “Payday, Vehicle title, and Certain High-Cost Installment Loans”. The NPR proposes to rescind the rule’s requirements that lenders make certain underwriting determinations before issuing loans of the type subject to the existing rule.

    13. On February 5, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released its scenarios for use in the upcoming stress tests for covered institutions. These supervisory scenarios include baseline, adverse, and severely adverse scenarios as described in the OCC’s stress testing rule.

    14. On February 5, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board issued final changes that it said will increase the transparency of its stress testing program. The FRB said these changes are intended to improve public understanding of the program while maintaining its ability to independently test large banks’ resilience.
    15. February 05, 2019

      The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued Frequently Asked Questions pertaining to compliance with the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule (TRID). The CFPB cautions that reviewing these questions and answers is not a substitute for reviewing TILA, RESPA, Regulation Z, or the official interpretations.

    16. On February 4, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board released the results of its January 2019 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices. This survey addressed changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans to businesses and households over the past three months (fourth quarter of 2018).
    17. On February 5, 2019 Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting announced the appointment of Grovetta Gardineer to become Senior Deputy Comptroller for Bank Supervision Policy, replacing Grace Dailey who will retire on March 2, 2019. Comptroller Otting explained that, in her new role, Ms. Gardineer will direct the formulation of policies and procedures for the supervision and examination of national banks and federal savings associations as well as overseeing staff responsible for identifying, assessing, and communicating risk to the federal banking system. She will continue to oversee the units that comprised the OCC’s Compliance and Community Affairs functions as part of the agency’s Bank Supervision Policy business unit.
    18. The Federal Reserve Board has issued “Vendor Management Considerations for Flood Insurance Requirements”, which has been posted in the latest issue of Community Banking Connections, the FRB’s online publication. This article notes that violations of the flood insurance provisions of Regulation H are among the most common compliance violations cited during FRB examinations. The article states that banks often outsource essential functions of flood insurance responsibilities because of the complex regulatory requirements. The article warns that banks should understand the legal, operational, and reputational risks associated with these third-party relationships because they are ultimately responsible for complying with applicable laws and regulations.

    19. On February 4, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Federal Reserve Board jointly provided an advisory on Voluntary Private Education Loan Rehabilitation Programs in order to make financial institutions aware of an amendment to section 623 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). This amendment was contained in section 602 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. The amendment gives consumers the opportunity to rehabilitate a private education loan with a previously reported default under certain conditions. The advisory states that institutions that choose to establish a private education loan rehabilitation program under this amendment that satisfies the statutory requirements (including written approval of the terms and conditions from their federal regulatory agency), are entitled to a safe harbor from potential claims under the FCRA related to removal of the reported default.

    20. At a “Research Symposium on the Community Reinvestment Act” hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia on February 1, 2019, FRB Governor Lael Brainard said the FRB values the CRA as a critical tool for providing support to low- and moderate-income families and their communities. She said the FRB is also interested in strengthening the CRA as it encourages banks to help meet the credit needs of the communities they are chartered to serve.

    January 2019

    1. On January 31, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a revised “subsidiaries and Equity Investments” booklet of the Comptroller’s Licensing Manual. This updated version of the booklet has been expanded to provide additional guidance describing activities
    2. On February 19, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation will host a webinar to provide an update on the standardized export of imaged loan documents initiative, which was first introduced in April 2018. The FDIC developed the standardized export of imaged loan documents in an effort to streamline examination processes, reduce financial institution burden, and expand opportunities for conducting loan review examination activities offsite.

    3. On January 28, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board announced that will host a public research conference in July on its stress testing framework. The conference will bring together academics, regulators, bankers, and other stakeholders to discuss the transparency and effectiveness of the FRB’s stress tests and how the stress tests can remain a dynamic and useful tool of large bank supervision.

    4. On January 8, 2018 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced it had updated its Innovation web page to include the Bureau’s No-Action Letter Policy. This policy was originally issued in February 2016. This policy provides for the issuance of No-Action Letters consisting of non-binding staff-level no-action recommendations.

    5. On January 8, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board invited comment on a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would revise its requirements for stress testing by FRB-supervised institutions, consistent with changes made by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. The proposal would amend the current stress testing regulations by changing the minimum threshold for applicability from $10 billion to $250 billion, revise the frequency of required stress tests by supervised institutions, and reduce the number of required stress testing scenarios from three to two (the hypothetical “adverse” scenario would be eliminated). The NPR also would make several other conforming and technical changes to existing regulations.
    6. On January 25, 2019 the federal banking agencies announced the findings of the latest Shared National Credit (SNC) Program Review. The report reflects the results of reviews in 2018 covering SNC loans originated by or before March 31, 2018.

      The agencies concluded that risk in the SNC portfolio has declined, due to improving conditions in most sectors. While noting this improvement, the agencies reported that the dollar volume of loans rated below “pass”, as a percentage of total loans, remains elevated compared with levels experienced in prior economic cycles. Furthermore, the review found increased risks associated with leveraged lending.

    7. On January 25, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board announced the appointment of Stacey M. Tevlin as director of the Division of Research and Statistics, effective February 4. Tevlin, currently an associate director of the division, will succeed David Wilcox, who recently retired as director.


    8. On January 17, 2019 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation released its latest updates to the agency’s Consumer Compliance Examination Manual. This manual provides supervisory information to examination staff that conduct consumer compliance examinations, CRA performance evaluations, and other supervisory activities. The manual is designed to promote consistency and efficiency in the examination process and compliance with applicable laws and regulations.

    9. On January 17, 2019 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced the appointment of Morris Morgan as its new Senior Deputy Comptroller and Chief Operating Officer (COO). The COO position was created by Comptroller Joseph Otting as part of his effort to change the agency’s executive reporting structure with the goal of allowing greater coordination and integration of the OCC’s bank supervision activities.

    10. On January 17, 2019 Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Kathleen Kraninger issued a statement announcing that she has asked Congress to grant the CFPB clear authority to supervise for compliance with the Military Lending Act (MLA). In her statement Director Kraninger said she had requested Congress to explicitly grant the Bureau the authority to conduct examinations specifically intended to review compliance with the MLA. She stated that the requested authority would complement the work the Bureau currently does to enforce the MLA.

    11. On January 16, 2019 the Federal Reserve Board announced the launch of Consumer & Community Context, an article series featuring original analysis regarding financial conditions and experiences of consumers and communities, including traditionally underserved and economically vulnerable households and neighborhoods.
    12. On January 15, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced the annual adjustments for inflation to the Bureau’s civil money penalty amounts, as required by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act. This final rule becomes effective upon publication in the Federal Register.
    13. On January 11, 2019 the federal banking agencies issued a statement to “encourage financial institutions to work with consumers affected by the federal government shutdown”. The statement suggests the effects of the shutdown on individuals should be temporary; however, the regulatory agencies advise that affected borrowers may face a temporary hardship in making payments on mortgages, student loans, car loans, business loans, or credit cards. With this in mind, the agencies encourage institutions to consider prudent efforts to modify terms on existing loans or extend new credit to help affected borrowers.

    14. On January 10, 2019 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau published a report assessing the effectiveness of the Bureau’s Ability-to-Repay and Qualified Mortgage Rule, and a separate report assessing the effectiveness of its Mortgage Servicing Rule. These rules were issued in January 2013 and became effective in January 2014.


    December 2018

    1. On December 21, 2018 the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced final policy guidance describing the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data the Bureau intends to make available to the public beginning in 2019.

      In 2015 the Bureau finalized changes to Regulation C, which implements HMDA. These changes updated the quality and type of data that lenders must collect and report. These changes also shifted the responsibility for disclosing loan-level HMDA data from lenders to the HMDA supervisory agencies. The Bureau has stated that it intends to engage in rulemaking to reconsider aspects of the 2015 rule.

    2. On December 3, 2018 the federal banking agencies, jointly with the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), issued a statement to encourage insured institutions to consider, evaluate and, where appropriate, responsibly implement innovative approaches to meet their BSA/AML compliance obligations in order to strengthen the financial system against illicit financial activity.
    3. On November 29, 2018 Senior Deputy Comptroller for Compliance and Community Affairs Grovetta Gardineer appeared before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs to discuss ways to strengthen and modernize the Bank Secrecy Act/Anti-Money Laundering regime. Ms. Gardineer began by stating that the OCC is working to improve its system for examining banks’ programs to combat money laundering and terrorist financing. She said the agency is reviewing supervisory policies and examination procedures to focus resources most effectively.
    4. On December 10, 2018 Kathy Kraninger took the oath of office to become the second formal director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Ms. Kraninger succeeds Mick Mulvaney, who was appointed as acting director of the Bureau following the resignation of former director Richard Cordray approximately one year ago.
    5. The federal banking agencies, jointly with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, are proposing to amend the regulations implementing section 13 of the Bank Holding Company Act (the “Volcker Rule”) in a manner consistent with the statutory amendments made pursuant to sections 203 and 204 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act). These statutory amendments:  (1) exclude certain institutions that have total consolidated assets equal to $10 billion or less and that have total consolidated trading assets and liabilities equal to five percent or less of total consolidated assets; and (2) amend the restrictions applicable to the naming of a hedge fund or private equity fund to permit an investment adviser that is a banking entity to share a name with the fund under certain circumstances.

    6. The federal banking agencies have approved the issuance of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would raise the threshold for residential real estate transactions requiring an appraisal to $400,000. The current threshold level of $250,000 was established in 1994. The proposal responds, in part, to comments that the current exemption level for residential transactions had not kept pace with price appreciation in the residential real estate market.

    7. On December 7, 2018 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued a Request for Information on its deposit insurance application process. The FDIC said it is seeking feedback on a number of topics, including ways in which the FDIC could or should support the continuing evolution of emerging technology and fintech companies, as well as aspects of the application process that may discourage potential applications, possible changes to the application process for traditional community bank proposals, as well as other suggestions. Comments on this Request for Information will be due 60 days from publication in the Federal Register.
    8. On December 3, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued its Fall 2018 Semiannual Risk Perspective, highlighting key risk themes in the current banking environment.

      This report notes that credit quality remains strong, but the OCC is monitoring the origination quality of new loans, the potential for increased lender complacency within credit risk identification and management, and the potential embedded risks from successive years of eased underwriting. The report also states that operational risk is elevated as banks respond to an evolving and increasingly complex operating environment. The OCC describes compliance risk as elevated due to money laundering risks and amended consumer compliance requirements.  The report also notes rising interest rates and increased competition for deposits as cause for concern.



    9. On December 27, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released an updated version of the “Student Lending” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook in order to include information about Section 602 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. Section 602 amends the Fair Credit Reporting Act to give borrowers the opportunity to rehabilitate private education loans under certain conditions.

    10. On December 26, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced Jonathan Gould as Senior Deputy Comptroller and Chief Counsel. Mr. Gould joins the OCC from the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, where he served as Chief Counsel.


    11. The Banking agencies have announced that they are finalizing, without change, the interim final rule published on August 29, 2018 that amended their regulations with regard to the examination cycle for certain small insured depository institutions consistent with section 210 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act). This section of the Act permits insured depository institutions that have total assets of less than $3 billion and that meet certain other criteria, to qualify for an 18-month, on-site examination cycle.
    12. On November 28, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board released its first ever Financial Stability Report, summarizing the FRB’s framework for assessing the resilience of the U.S. financial system. The FRB said this report is similar to those published by other central banks and complements the annual report of the Financial Stability Oversight Council, which is chaired by the Secretary of the Treasury and includes the Federal Reserve Board Chairman and other financial regulators.
    13. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency reported a slight improvement in the performance of first-lien mortgages in the federal banking system during the third quarter of 2018. The OCC Mortgage Metrics Report, Third Quarter 2018 showed 95.4 percent of mortgages encompassed by the report were current and performing, compared to 94.8 percent one year earlier.

    14. On November 30, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced it will reduce assessments on national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches and agencies of foreign banks for 2019. The reduction, which becomes effective with the March 31, 2019 assessment, will reduce the marginal rates in the General Assessment Fee Schedule by 10 percent. The OCC estimates this rate reduction will reduce total assessments collected by the agency by more than $90 million in 2019.
    15. On December 28, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued updates to the “Bank Premises and Equipment”, “Consigned Items and Other Customer Services”, and “Litigation and Other Legal Matters” booklets of the Comptroller’s Handbook. These revised booklets replace the booklets of the same title previously issued in 2015 and 2016. The updated booklets incorporate references to relevant OCC issuances published since these booklets were issued.

    16. In a speech delivered to The Economic Club of New York on November 28, 2018, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell discussed what he termed the “profound transformation since the Global Financial Crisis in the Federal Reserve’s approach to monitoring and addressing financial stability”. He began his remarks by announcing the publication of the Federal Reserve Board’s first Financial Stability Report. He also referenced the FRB’s first edition of its Supervision and Regulation Report, which was issued earlier in November. He said that taken together, these two reports contain a wealth of information on the FRB’s approach to financial stability and to financial regulation more broadly.
    17. In remarks delivered at the Annual Conference of The Clearing House and Bank Policy Institute on November 28, 2018, FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams discussed the history of bank failure resolutions in the U.S. and the goals of the resolution process. Ms. McWilliams began her remarks by noting FDIC’s long, established record of successfully handling smaller bank failures.  She then pointed out the differences and unique challenges associated with resolving larger institutions, particularly the most complex, globally active financial institutions. The remainder of her speech focused on the FDIC’s approach to large institution resolution planning, how the agency is working to strengthen the process, and the path forward.
    18. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has reported that the Deposit Insurance Fund Ratio reached 1.36 percent on September 30, 2018, ahead of the September 30, 2020 deadline required under the Dodd-Frank Act. FDIC regulations provide for two changes to deposit insurance assessments upon reaching this minimum ratio:  (1) surcharges on insured depository institutions with total consolidated assets of $10 billion or more (large banks) will cease; and (2) small banks will receive assessment credits for the portion of their assessments that contributed to the growth in the reserve ratio from between 1.15 percent and 1.35 percent, to be applied when the reserve ratio is at or above 1.38 percent.
    19. On November 27, 2018 the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council issued an update on its Examination Modernization Project. The update states that the purpose of the project is to identify and assess ways to improve the effectiveness, efficiency, and quality of community financial institutions safety and soundness examination processes, particularly through increased use of technology.

    20. On December 21, 2018 President Trump named Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting as Acting Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Mr. Otting will assume this acting position on January 6, 2019 when current Director Mel Watt’s official term expires.
    21. The federal banking agencies have issued a final rule that revises the regulatory capital rules for each agency in order to address the earnings and common tier 1 capital impact resulting from implementation of the current expected credit losses (CECL) methodology. The new accounting standard for credit losses will apply to all banking organizations that file regulatory reports that must conform to U.S. GAAP, and may increase institutions’ credit loss allowances, thereby reducing earnings and capital.
    22. With parts of the federal government currently being shut down as a result of the U.S. Congress’ failure to pass a stopgap funding measure on December 21, 2018, questions and concerns have arisen regarding the shutdown’s impact on normal banking industry operations.  Due to the nature of federal funding for particular government programs, the shutdown will impact these programs in differing ways.

    23. On December 27, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued amended guidelines regarding recovery planning standards for national banks and federal savings associations. These guidelines were first published on September 29, 2016, and establish minimum standards for recovery planning by banks with average total consolidated assets equal to or greater than $50 billion.

    24. On November 26, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency published the latest edition of its Community Developments Investments newsletter. This edition focuses on “Expanding Internet Access:  Bank Financing for Rural Broadband Initiatives”, and discusses the important role financial institutions can play in helping rural communities gain reliable, high-speed internet access through broadband networks. The newsletter explains how banks financing broadband initiatives can help reduce the digital divide and improve job, educational, and other opportunities in rural communities that are struggling economically with unreliable internet access.

    25. The banking agencies have issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would increase the major assets prohibition thresholds of the Depository Institution Management Interlocks Act (DIMIA). The proposed increase would raise the current major assets prohibition thresholds from $1.5 billion and $2.5 billion in total assets, respectively, to a single threshold of $10 billion. The NPR also proposes three additional options, two based on changes in the U.S banking market and one to account for inflation. The agencies state that, in most cases, adjusting the thresholds would relieve depository institutions with asset levels below the new thresholds from the requirement to seek an exemption to permit a prohibited management interlock.



    November 2018

    1. On November 9, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board issued its inaugural edition of its Supervision and Regulation Report. This report summarizes current banking system conditions and the FRB’s recent supervisory and regulatory actions. The FRB explains that this edition of the report looks at trends going back to the financial crisis; however, future reports will focus primarily on developments in the period subsequent to the previous report.
    2. In a speech delivered on November 9, 2018, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chairman Randal Quarles discussed the FRB’s stress testing regime – what has been successful, some proposed changes, and plans for implementation of changes.
    3. The Federal Reserve Board has released the results of its October 2018 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices. The survey addressed changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans to businesses and households over the previous three months.
    4. On October 30, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection issued an updated Small Entity Compliance Guide to reflect Section 104(a) of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act and the interpretive and procedural rule issued on August 31, 2018.
    5. On November 7, 2018 the three federal banking agencies issued a joint Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would expand the number of regulated institutions eligible for streamlined Call Report requirements. This proposal would implement section 205 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (EGRRCPA).
    6. On November 8, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (BCFP) and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released for public use a new loan-level dataset collected through the National Survey of Mortgage Originations (NSMO) that provides insights into borrowers’ experiences in getting a residential mortgage. The NSMO is a component of the National Mortgage Database (NMDB). The NMDB is a repository of detailed mortgage loan information designed to support policymaking and research efforts and to help regulators better understand emerging mortgage and housing market trends.
    7. In remarks delivered to community bankers on November 16, 2018, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Chairman Jelena McWilliams said regulatory officials need to ensure that the regulatory regime for community banks is appropriately tailored. She said regulations should promote safety and soundness but should not be so complex that small banks cannot survive.
    8. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation will discuss the results of its 2017 biennial National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households during a teleconference scheduled for Wednesday, November 28, 2018, from 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM ET. The FDIC states that other topics will include economic inclusion resources pertinent to community banks, including CRA consideration for activities that benefit underserved communities.
    9. In remarks delivered in Japan on November 14, 2018, Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting outlined current risks facing the U.S. banking system. He said the OCC is currently focused on four risk areas.
    10. On November 14, 2018, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced it is seeking public comment on issues related to small dollar lending by FDIC supervised institutions. The Request for Information (RFI) solicits comments on the consumer demand for small dollar
    11. In a speech delivered on November 15, 2018, FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams said that a vibrant banking sector that operates in a safe and sound manner and is fair to consumers is a strong support to a nation’s economy. Over time, she said, the traditional role of banks has evolved, and continues to do so today. She stated that many of these changes have brought great benefits to consumers – the democratization of finance, cheaper, more accessible services, and more efficient markets. At the same time, she cautioned, banking inherently comes with risk, and it is important to monitor what types of risk accompany changes in the industry.
    12. On November 1, 2018 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued a Financial Institution Letter covering recently issued modifications to the agency’s Statement of Policy (SOP) for Section 19 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act.
    13. On October 30, 2018 the federal banking agencies announced the issuance of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to update their standards regarding how banks measure counterparty credit risk posed by derivative contracts under the agencies’ capital rules. The agencies stated that the proposed changes are designed to better reflect the current derivatives market and incorporate risks observed during the recent financial crisis.

    14. In recent testimony before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs and the House Financial Services Committee, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles discussed two main topics:  the FRB’s efforts to improve regulatory transparency; and the FRB’s progress in making the post-crisis regulatory framework simpler and more efficient.
    15. On November 15, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board approved final amendments to simplify Regulation J (Collection of Checks and Other items by Federal Reserve Banks and Funds Transfers through Fedwire), and to make Regulation J conform more closely with Regulation CC (Availability of Funds and Collection of Checks).

    16. In remarks delivered on November 13, 2018 at a Fintech Forum hosted by the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank, Federal Reserve Board Governor Lael Brainard spoke about the application of artificial intelligence (AI) in the financial services industry. Governor Brainard said the Federal Reserve System is taking a deliberate approach to understanding the potential implications of AI, and is seeking to learn from industry, banks, consumer advocates, researchers, and others.

    17. The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) members issued a joint statement alerting financial institutions to recent actions taken by the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) under its Cyber-Related Sanctions Program and to the potential impact it may have on financial institutions’ risk-management programs.
    18. In remarks delivered on November 13, 2018 at a Fintech Forum hosted by the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank, FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams discussed the role of innovation in banking and the expansion of access to banking services. Chairman McWilliams said new technology has the proven ability to improve the customer experience, lower transactions costs, and increase credit availability. It also offers a significant opportunity to expand access to the banking system.

    19. On November 16, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection announced it has updated the Loan Originator Rule guide and the HOEPA Rule guide to reflect amendments made by Section 107 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.


    September 2018

    1. On September 6, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection issued its 17th edition of Supervisory Highlights. This report covers Bureau supervision activities completed between December 2017 and May 2018, and shares observations in the areas of auto loan servicing, credit card account management, debt collection, mortgage servicing, payday lending, and small business lending.
    2. On September 5, 2018 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued the Summer 2018 edition of Supervisory Insights. This issue highlights the specialized business of bank lending to the oil and gas sector. “Oil Price Volatility and Bank Performance:  A View from the Supervisory Process” discusses how the steep drop in oil prices beginning in 2014 tested the risk management practices of insured banks active in this type of lending and other institutions operating in geographic areas that depend on the oil and gas industry.
    3. On September 4, 2018 FDIC Chairman Jelena McWilliams announced the appointment of Arleas Upton Kea to serve as Deputy to the Chairman and Chief Operating Officer. Ms. Kea replaces Barbara Ryan, who retired in July. Prior to this appointment, Ms. Kea served as director of the FDIC’s Division of Administration.
    4. On September 4, 2018 the federal banking agencies, together with the Commodities Futures Trading Commission and the Securities and Exchange Commission, announced the extension of the comment period for a proposed rule to simplify and tailor compliance requirements for the “Volcker Rule”.
    5. On September 12, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board approved final amendments to the liability provisions of Regulation CC, which governs availability of funds and collection of checks. The FRB states that these amendments continue its efforts to update Regulation CC to reflect the evolution of the U.S. check collection system from one that is largely paper-based to one that is virtually all electronic.
    6. On September 11, 2018 the three federal banking agencies, in conjunction with the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection and the National Credit Union Administration, issued a joint statement explaining the rule of supervisory guidance for regulated institutions. The statement confirms that supervisory guidance does not have the force and effect of law, and the agencies do not take enforcement actions based on supervisory guidance.
    7. On September 25, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency released its bank supervision operating plan for fiscal year 2019. The OCC explains that this plan will provide the foundation for policy initiatives and for supervisory strategies it will apply to institutions under its supervision, including technology service providers. The plan will be used by OCC staff to guide supervisory practices, priorities, planning, and resource allocations.
    8. On September 21, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued the OCC Mortgage Metrics Report, Second Quarter 2018. The report reveals that performance of first-lien mortgages remained largely unchanged during the second quarter of 2018 compared with one year earlier. The report showed that 95.6 percent of mortgages included in the report were current and performing at the end of the quarter, compared to 95.4 percent a year earlier.
    9. On September 17, 2018 Richard H. Clarida was sworn in as Vice Chairman and member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. Mr. Clarida was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on August 28, 2018 to an unexpired term as a Board member, ending on January 31, 2022, and to a four-year term as Vice Chairman.
    10. On September 18, 2018 the federal banking agencies issued for public comment a proposal to modify the agencies’ capital rules for high volatility commercial real estate exposures. This action is mandated by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act).  The Act requires the capital rules to be amended to revise the definition of “high volatility Commercial Real Estate (HVCRE) exposure” to conform to the statutory definition of “high volatility commercial real estate acquisition, development, or construction (HVCRE ADC) loan”, in accordance with Section 214 of the Act.
    11. On September 25, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection issued a report and Request for Information (RFI) regarding the Bureau’s sources of data and how data is used. The Bureau said the report provides transparency into how it collects and uses data, and the accompanying RFI is intended to give the public the opportunity to comment on those practices.
    12. On September 12, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection issued an interim final rule updating two model disclosures to reflect changes made to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) by recent legislation. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act) requires nationwide consumer reporting agencies to provide “national security freezes” free of charge to consumers. This “freeze” restricts prospective lenders from obtaining access to a consumer’s credit report, which makes it more difficult for identity thieves to open accounts in the consumer’s name.
    13. On September 7, 2018 the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued a ruling that grants exceptive relief to covered financial institutions from the obligations of the Beneficial Ownership Requirements for Legal Entity Customers rule and its requirement to identify and verify the identity of the beneficial owners when a legal entity customer opens a new account as a result of:
    14. On September 10, 2018 the three federal banking agencies issued an interagency interim final rule amending the regulations governing eligibility for the 18-month examination cycle, pursuant to provisions of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. The interim final rule makes qualifying 1- and 2-rated national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches and agencies with less than $3 billion in total assets eligible for an 18-month (rather than a 12-monrh) examination cycle.
    15. On September 7, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection announced new members to its Consumer Advisory Board and its Community Bank Advisory Council. These committees provide advice to the Bureau leadership on a broad range of consumer financial issues and emerging market trends.
    16. The Government Accountability Office has released a report (GAO 18-312) on small business lending and community banks. GAO’s objective was to assess the effect of regulatory changes since 2010 on community banks and small business lending.

      In conducting this study, GAO examined the data regulators use to measure small business lending, as well as the extent of any regulatory effects on the amount of community banks’ small business lending and their lending process, changes in bank populations, and financial performance. GAO analyzed community bank lending and financial data from 2001 through 2017, and surveyed a nationally representative sample of over 450 community banks. 

    17. On September 21, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board issued for public comment a proposal to amend Regulation H (Membership of State Banking Institutions in the Federal Reserve System) and Regulation K (International Banking Operations) to repeal provisions that incorporate the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act (S.A.F.E. Act). The FRB explains that this proposal reflects the transfer of the FRB’s rulemaking authority for the S.A.F.E. Act to the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (Bureau).
    18. The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection will hold its fall 2018 advisory council meetings at the Bureau’s headquarters offices on September 27, 2018. The Consumer Advisory Board and Community Bank Advisory Council will meet concurrently from 9:30 to Noon in conference rooms in the headquarters building at 1700 G. Street, N.W., Washington, DC.

    19. On September 10, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced the issuance of a proposed rule that would provide more business flexibility to federal savings associations. The proposed rule would implement Section 206 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. Section 206 requires the OCC to issue regulations to allow federal savings associations with total consolidated assets of $20 billion or less, as of December 31, 2017, to elect to operate with national bank powers. Savings associations that make this election generally would have the same rights and privileges as a national bank and be subject to the same duties, restrictions, penalties, liabilities, conditions, and limitations that apply to national banks.
    20. On September 19, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced a proposal to amend its enforceable guidelines relating to recovery planning standards (guidelines) for insured national banks and federal savings associations. The proposed amendments would limit the application of the guidelines to the largest, most complex banks and thereby provide regulatory burden relief to smaller, less complex institutions.

      The proposal would amend the guidelines to increase the average total consolidated assets threshold for applying the guidelines to banks from $50 billion to $250 billion. The OCC advises that this change would reduce the number of banks to which the guidelines apply from 25 to 8. The proposal would also decrease from 18 months to 12 months the time within which a bank should comply with the guidelines after the bank first becomes subject to the guidelines. The proposal would also make technical amendments to the guidelines to remove outdated compliance dates.


    21. On September 7, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board announced the members of its Community Depository Institutions Advisory Council (CDIAC) and the president and vice president of the council for 2019. The CDIAC advises the Board on the economy, lending conditions, and other issues of interest to community depository institutions. One member of each of the Reserve Bank councils serves on the CDIAC, which meets twice per year with the FRB in Washington.
    22. On September 13, 2018 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced it is seeking comment on a proposed rule to implement Section 202 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act) to exempt certain reciprocal deposits from being considered as brokered deposits for certain insured institutions. 

      Under this proposed rule, well-capitalized and well-rated institutions would not be required to treat reciprocal deposits as brokered deposits up to the lesser of 20 percent of institution total liabilities or $5 billion. Institutions that are not both well-capitalized and well-rated would also be able to exclude reciprocal deposits from their brokered deposits under certain circumstances.

    23. On September 13, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection released a new version of its electronic regulations platform called “Interactive Bureau Regulations” (previously known as “eRegulations”). The new Interactive Bureau Regulations includes the most used features that were available through eRegulations, but now allows the Bureau to more quickly and efficiently amend the content of the regulations presented on the Bureau’s web site.
    24. On September 12, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued an updated “Deposit-Related Credit” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. The booklet replaces the booklet of the same title issued in March 2015. This booklet also replaces OCC Bulletin 2015-17, “Deposit-Related Credit:  Revised Comptroller’s Handbook Booklet”.
    25. On September 10, 2018 the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued FIL-46-2018 announcing the agency is seeking comment on a proposal to retire certain Financial Institution Letters (FILs) to an inactive status. The FDIC stated that this is part of a continuing effort to reduce regulatory burden. The agency said 374 of the 664 risk management supervision-related FILs issued between 1995 and 2017 will be targeted in this effort. The FDIC proposes that the 374 identified FILs will be retired to inactive status and will be archived and remain accessible, if needed, for reference.
    26. On September 26, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued the “Truth in Lending Act (TILA) booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook. The OCC stated that this updated booklet replaces a similarly titled booklet issued in December 2014.
    27. The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection has announced the agenda for its symposium on credit visibility. This symposium will take place on September 17, 2018, from 8:00 AM to 4:45 PM at the Bureau’s headquarters at 1700 G Street, NW, Washington, DC.
    28. The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection recently announced an initiative to create the Global Financial Innovation Network (GFIN). The Bureau states that this network will seek to provide a more efficient way for innovative firms to interact with regulators, helping them navigate between countries as they look to scale new ideas.
    29. The three federal banking agencies, along with the Farm Credit Administration and the Federal Housing Finance Agency, have approved final amendments to their rules establishing minimum margin requirements for registered swap dealers, major swap participants, security-based swap dealers, and major security-based swap participants (Swap Margin Rule). These amendments conform the Swap Margin Rule to rules recently adopted by the FRB, FDIC, and OCC that impose restrictions on certain qualified financial contracts, including certain non-cleared swaps subject to the Swap Margin Rule (the QFC Rules).

    August 2018

    1. On August 31, 2018 the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection issued an interpretive and procedural rule to implement and clarify the requirements of section 104(a) of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act). This portion of the Act amended the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA). The Bureau also released updates to the Filing Instructions Guide (FIG) for HMDA data collected in 2018 to incorporate the Act as implemented and clarified by the newly issued rule.
    2. On August 30, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced that they have extended the next resolution plan filing deadline for certain specific financial institutions.
    3. On August 28, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comment on the best ways to modernize the regulatory framework implementing the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). The CRA was enacted in 1977 to encourage insured depository institutions to help meet the credit needs of their communities.
    4. On August 28, 2018 the Federal Reserve Board issued an interim final rule that expands the applicability of the agency’s small bank holding company policy statement, as required by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act of 2018. The policy statement facilitates the transfer of ownership of small community banks by allowing their holding companies to operate with higher levels of debt than would normally be permitted. While holding companies that meet the conditions of the policy statement are excluded from consolidated capital requirements, their depository institutions continue to be subject to minimum capital requirements.
    5. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2018-23 in order to make public revisions to its Policies and Procedures Manual (PPM) 5000-43, which clarifies the OCC’s policy for applying the regulatory framework to determine the effect of evidence of discriminatory or other illegal credit practices on the CRA rating of a national bank or federal savings association.
    6. On August 10, 2018, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection finalized amendments to Regulation P that allow financial institutions that meet certain requirements to be exempt from sending annual privacy notices to their customers.

    July 2018

    1. On July 31, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued a revised “Business Combinations” booklet of the Comptroller’s Licensing Manual.
    2. In a recent speech, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles discussed the manner by which the agency will implement the provisions of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (Act) relating to the supervision of larger financial institutions.Specifically, the Act directs the FRB to tailor supervision and regulation of large banks with more than $100 billion in assets.

    3. On July 18, 2018 Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection Acting Director Mick Mulvaney announced the selection of Paul Watkins to lead the Bureau’s new Office of Innovation. 
    4. In a Financial Institution Letter dated July 17, 2018 (FIL-40-2018), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is reminding FDIC-supervised institutions that the burden-reducing revisions to all three versions of the Call Report are taking effect as the June 30, 2018 report date.

    June 2018

    1. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has selected Sydney Menefee to be the agency’s next Deputy Comptroller and Chief Accountant.
    2. In its latest quarterly report on mortgages, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency reveals the performance of first-lien mortgages remained unchanged during the first quarter of 2018.

    3. On June 28, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board released the 2018 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review results.
    4. The federal banking agencies, along with the Financial Accounting Standards Board, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, will host a webinar on Monday, July 30, 2018 at 1:00 PM ET, focusing solely on questions received from community bankers regarding the current expected credit losses methodology.
    5. In a June 27, 2018, address to the Utah Bankers Association, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chairman for Supervision Randal Quarles discussed the global nature of pre-crisis banking vulnerabilities and the steps taken to increase financial system resiliency.
    6. On June 15, 2018, the banking agencies issued the host state loan-to-deposit ratios that will be used to determine compliance with section 109 of the Riegle-Neal Interstate Banking and Branching Efficiency Act of 1994 (Riegle-Neal).
    7. On June 15, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued Bulletin 2018-17 in an effort to inform national banks and federal savings associations about clarifications to OCC supervisory policies and processes regarding how examiners evaluate and communicate bank performance under the Community Reinvestment Act.
    8. On June 13 and 14, 2108, Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting discussed his priorities for the agency and the banking industry more broadly during testimony before the House Financial Services Committee and the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs
    9. On June 14, 2018, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System approved the issuance of a final rule to implement single-counterparty credit limits (SCCL) for large U.S. bank holding companies (BHCs) and foreign banking organizations (FBOs) pursuant to section 165(e) of the Dodd-Frank Act (Act).
    10. On June 6, 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced the commencement of its process of transforming the Bureau’s stakeholder Outreach and engagement work. 

    11. On June 6, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced the selection of Bao Nguyen and Ted Dowd to serve as Deputy Chief Counsels.
    12. The three prudential banking agencies, jointly with the Commodities Futures Trading Commission and the Securities and Exchange Commission, will issue a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to amend regulations adopted in 2013 implementing Section 13 of the Bank Holding Company Act (Volcker Rule).
    13. On June 1, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation jointly issued a final rule to shorten the standard settlement cycle for securities purchased or sold by OCC-supervised and FDIC-supervised institutions

    May 2018

    1. In the latest edition of its Community Development Investments newsletter, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency discusses how minority-owned depository institution executives can collaborate with large and midsize banks in ways that are profitable for all parties.
    2. On May 24, 2018, the U.S. Senate voted to confirm Jelena McWilliams as Chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
    3. On May 24, 2018, President Trump signed into law the “Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act”, which makes certain amendments to the Dodd-Frank Act and other modifications to post-crisis requirements.
    4. On May 10, 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced the release of its Spring 2018 rulemaking agenda, that includes rulemaking actions in pre-rule, proposed rule, final rule, long-term, inactive, and completed stages.
    5. In a speech delivered to the New York City Bar White Collar Crime Institute on May 9, 2018, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced a new policy that encourages coordination among DOJ components and other enforcement agencies when imposing multiple penalties for the same conduct.
    6. On May 7, 2018, the Financial Stability Board published for public comment “Recommendations for Consistent National Reporting of Data on the Use of Compensation tools to Address Misconduct Risk”.
    7. On May 7, 2018, the Federal Financial Institutions Examinations Council announced the availability of data on mortgage lending transactions at financial institutions covered by the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act.

    April 2018

    1. On April 27, 2018, FDIC Vice Chairman Thomas M. Hoenig announced that he is stepping down as the Vice Chairman and a Member of the FDIC Board of Directors, effective April 30, 2018.
    2. On April 26, 2018, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection issued a final amendment to its “know before you owe” mortgage disclosure rule that addresses the circumstances under which mortgage lenders may pass on increased closing costs to consumers.
    3. On April 26, 2018, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued the “Recovery Planning” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook.
    4. On April 26, 2018, J. Christopher Giancarlo, Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, released a white paper highlighting plans for improving the regulation of markets for swaps and derivatives.
    5. The three federal banking agencies are proposing to revise their regulatory capital rules to address and provide an option to phase in the regulatory capital effects of the new accounting standard for credit losses, known as the “Current Expected Credit Losses” (CECL) methodology.
    6. On April 11, 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a Request for Information (RFI) on its handling of consumer complaints and inquiries.  The CFPB said this information will assist the Bureau in assessing its handling of complaints and in considering whether changes to its processes would be appropriate.
    7. On April 2, 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau submitted its latest Semiannaual report to Congress as required by the Dodd-Frank Act.
    8. On April 2, 2018, the federal banking agencies issued a joint final rule that increases the threshold for commercial real estate transactions requiring an appraisal from $250,000 to $500,000.
    9. The Federal Reserve Board has announced that work will begin shortly on a new study that will measure fraud and associated cost in the U.S. payments system and identify the causes and contributing factors to fraud.  The FRB said this is part of its ongoing effort to improve and support payment security throughout the industry.

    March 2018

    1. In a speech delivered to the Peterson Institute for International Economics on March 28, 2018, FDIC Vice Chairman Thomas Hoenig discussed his view of how to provide meaningful regulatory relief without undermining the goal of assuring sound banking.
    2. In a March 21, 2018, speech before the Banking Standards Board (BSB) in London, New York Federal Reserve Bank President William Dudley discussed issues related to improving culture within the financial services industry.
    3. On March 5, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board announced it is seeking comment on amendments to simplify Regulation J (Collection of Checks and Other Items by Federal Reserve Banks and funds Transfers through Fedwire) and to make it conform more closely with Regulation CC (Availability of Funds and Collection of Checks).

    February 2018

    1. On February 27, 2018, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation issued fourth quarter 2017 banking industry performance data, which reflected a 40.9 percent decline in aggregate net income during this period.
    2. On February 26, 2018, Randal Quarles, Federal Reserve Board Vice Chairman for Supervision, offered remarks on the financial regulatory system and cybersecurity to the 2018 Spring Conference of the Financial Services Roundtable.
    3. On February 15, 2018, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation adopted a final rule amending the agency’s international banking regulations related to permissible investment activities and the pledging of assets
    4. February 12, 2018
      On February 12, 2018, the Consumer Financial protection Bureau released its five-year Strategic Plan setting forth the agency’s mission, strategic goals, and strategic objectives (FY 2018 Plan).
    5. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Federal Reserve Board, in conjunction with the Financial Accounting Standards Board, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, will host a webinar to discuss how smaller, less complex community banks can implement the Current Expected Credit Loss (CECL) methodology
    6. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has issued a report disclosing weaknesses in the analyses performed by the federal banking agencies, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that could undermine the goal of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA).
    7. On February 5, 2018, the three federal banking agencies, jointly with the Farm Credit Administration (FCA) and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), issued a proposal to amend swap margin requirements to conform with recent rule changes that impose new restrictions on certain qualified financial contracts (QFCs) of systemically important banking organizations.
    8. On February 5, 2018, Jerome H. Powell was sworn in as Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, succeeding Janet L. Yellen.  Prior to his appointment as Chairman, Mr. Powell served as a member of the Board of Governors.
    9. On February 5, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board released its January 2018 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices.  This survey addressed changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans to businesses and households over the past three months.
    10. On February 1, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board released the scenarios banks and supervisors will use for the 2018 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR) and Dodd-Frank Act stress test (DFAST) exercises.  The agency also issued instructions to firms participating in CCAR.

    January 2018

    1. On January 31, 2018, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a Request for Information (RFI) regarding administrative adjudications.  The CFPB explained that it is seeking to better understand the benefits and impacts of the agency’s use of administrative adjudications, and how its existing process may be improved.
    2. On January 31, 2018 the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency issued the updated “Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board Rules” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook
    3. On January 29, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced the agencies had communicated their expectations to 19 foreign-based banking organizations for the firms’ next resolution plans. 

    4. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has issued its Winter 2017 edition of Supervisory Insights, a web publication providing a forum for discussing how bank regulation and policy are put into practice and for communicating about emerging issues facing bank supervisors.
    5. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a statement reminding affected parties of the January 16, 2018 effective date of the Bureau’s “Payday, Vehicle Title, and Certain High-Cost Installment loans” final rule.
    6. On January 4, 2018, the Federal Reserve Board requested comments on proposed guidance that would clarify the FRB’s supervisory expectations related to risk management for large financial institutions
    7. The federal banking agencies, in consultation with the Conference of State Bank Supervisors, have issued guidance to their respective examiners regarding supervisory practices to be followed when assessing the financial condition of institutions directly affected by an event that results in a Presidential declaration of a major disaster.
    8. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a public statement advising that the agency expects to issue a final rule amending certain aspects of its 2016 rule governing prepaid accounts soon after the new year.
    9. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced that performance of first-lien mortgages remained unchanged during the third quarter of 2017 compared with one year earlier.
    10. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has issued Bulletin 2017-62 informing national banks and federal savings associations - as well as all OCC examining personnel - that for HMDA data collected in 2018 by banks and reported in 2019, the OCC does not intend to require data resubmission unless data errors are material
    11. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has issued a public statement announcing that the Bureau does not intend to require data resubmission unless data errors are material, or assess penalties with respect to errors for data collected in 2018 and reported in 2019 under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA).
    12. The federal banking agencies have announced that, effective January 1, 2018, the aggregate loan commitment threshold for inclusion in the Shared National Credit (SNC) program will increase from $20 million to $100 million