Federal Banking Agencies Seek Comments on Their Regulations in Effort to Reduce Regulatory Burden


The FRB, FDIC and OCC (the “Agencies”) published the first of a series of four requests seeking public comments to identify regulations of the respective Agencies that are seen as outdated, unnecessary or unduly burdensome.  The Agencies noted that any changes to their regulations that are designed to reduce regulatory burden must be compatible with the safety and soundness of depository institutions and must be consistent with the Agencies’ statutory mandates.  The Agencies’ first notice of regulatory review and request for comments (the “First Notice”) was issued on June 4, 2014 pursuant to the Economic Growth and Regulatory Paperwork Reduction Act of 1996 (“EGRPRA”).  Under EGRPRA, the Agencies are required to conduct a review every ten years to identify outdated, unnecessary or unduly burdensome regulations.

The Agencies divided those of their regulations that will be reviewed into 12 categories (the “Categories”):

  • Applications and Reporting
  • Banking Operations
  • Capital
  • Community Reinvestment Act
  • Consumer Protection
  • Directors, Officers and Employees
  • International Operations
  • Money Laundering
  • Powers and Activities
  • Rules of Procedure
  • Safety and Soundness
  • Securities

The Agencies said that over the next two years they expect to issue four regulatory notices and that each notice will seek comments on regulations covering one or more of the Categories.  The First Notice seeks comments on the Agencies’ regulations concerning:  (1) Applications and Reporting; (2) Powers and Activities; and (3) International Operations.

In the First Notice, the Agencies included charts for each of the twelve Categories that identify specifically the regulations for which the Agencies are seeking comment and identify the type of institution (national bank, state member bank, state non-member bank, federal savings association, state savings association, bank holding company, financial holding company or savings and loan holding company) to which the regulation applies.  The Agencies noted that they seek comments identifying regulations that pose a particularly harsh burden on community banks.

The Agencies said that they would schedule roundtable discussions with bankers and interested parties regarding these potential regulatory changes.  Comments on the First Notice are due by September 2, 2014.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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