InfoBytes, June 10, 2011


Topics in this issue:

Federal Issues; State Issues; Firm News; Mortgages; Banking; and Securities.

Excerpt from Federal Issues Category:

Federal Issues

Amendment to Delay Interchange Fee Caps Fails in Senate. On June 8, an amendment to the Economic Development Revitalization Act submitted by Senators John Tester and Robert Corker to delay the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act debit card interchange fee reforms fell 6 votes short of the 60 required. The amendment sought to delay the implementation of fee caps by up to one year in order to conduct a joint agency study to assess the impact of regulating interchange fees on (i) all fixed and incremental costs associated with debit card transactions and program operations to card issuers and payment card networks; (ii) consumers, including effects on anti-fraud efforts, retail prices, and the availability and cost of payment accounts and services; and (iii) the effectiveness of exemptions for small issuers. The failure of this amendment means that the Act’s debit and interchange fee caps and the Federal Reserve’s final rule on the caps will take effect on July 21....

Federal Agencies Seek Comment on Proposed Guidance on Stress Testing for Banking Organizations. On June 9, the Federal Reserve Board, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (Agencies) announced that they are seeking comments on the proposed guidance related to stress testing practices at supervised banking organizations with more than $10 billion in total consolidated assets. The proposed guidance outlines (i) a stress testing framework; (ii) general stress testing principles; (iii) stress testing approaches and applications; (iv) the importance of stress testing in assessing the adequacy of capital and liquidity; and (v) the need for internal governance and controls over the stress testing framework. While the proposed guidance does not explicitly address the requirements of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the Agencies suggest that the profiled stress-testing principles will serve as a background for future rulemaking and supervisory activities. Comments to the proposed guidance must be received on or before July 29, 2011....

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