Federal Reserve Board Initiates Acquisition Guidance Program

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On July 12, the Federal Reserve Board issued supervisory guidance outlining a new optional process for a supervised institution to request feedback on a potential bank and nonbank acquisition or other transactional proposal prior to the submission of a formal application or notice. The supervision and regulation letter explains that under the new optional process, supervised institutions may submit “pre-filings” to the appropriate Reserve Bank. Pre-filings can include inquiries seeking (i) advice about a specific aspect of a proposal, business plans or pro forma financial information related to a potential filing, or presentations outlining specific potential proposals, (ii) feedback on draft transactional and structural documents, and (iii) guidance regarding the type of filing required or the individuals or entities that would need to join a filing. In most cases, pre-filing and submitted information will be reviewed within 60 days. The guidance cautions that Federal Reserve staff review will focus on the specific request, and a review is not intended to identify or resolve all issues or concerns related to a possible future application or notice. The Federal Reserve also notes that it is not inviting negotiations on the structure of a potential proposal or for resolving significant issues of policy or law as part of this advance guidance program.