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  • OCC updates Comptroller’s Handbook booklet to address deposit-related credit

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On September 12, the OCC issued Bulletin 2018-28, which updates the “Deposit-Related Credit” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook previously issued March 2015. The booklet provides guidance for OCC examiners to be used in connection with the examination and supervision of national banks and federal savings associations who offer small-dollar, unsecured deposit-related credit products and services, such as check credit, overdraft protection, and deposit advance products. The booklet also includes, among other things, (i) updated guidance following the rescission of OCC Bulletin 2013-40, “Deposit Advance Products: Final Supervisory Guidance,” (previously covered by InfoBytes here) and the issuance of OCC Bulletin 2018-14, “Installment Lending: Core Lending Principles for Short-Term, Small-Dollar Installment Lending” (previously covered by InfoBytes here); (ii) information concerning limitations and requirements for consumer credit products extended to active-duty servicemembers covered by the Military Lending Act; (iii) integrated citations to third-party risk management guidance and procedures; (iv) information pertaining to new products and services, including sound due diligence practices; and (v) prohibitions against unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts or practices under Dodd-Frank.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC Comptroller's Handbook Deposit Products Examination Supervision Military Lending Act

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  • Agencies say supervisory guidance does not have the “force and effect” of law

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On September 11, five federal agencies (the Federal Reserve Board, CFPB, FDIC, NCUA, and OCC) issued a joint statement confirming that supervisory guidance “does not have the force and effect of law, and [that] the agencies do not take enforcement actions based on supervisory guidance.” The statement distinguishes the various types of supervisory guidance—interagency statements, advisories, bulletins, policy statements, questions and answers, and frequently asked questions—from laws or regulations and emphasizes that the intention of supervisory guidance is to outline agencies’ expectations or priorities. The statement highlights five policies and practices related to supervisory guidance: (i) limit the use of numerical thresholds or other “bright-line” requirements; (ii) examiners will not cite to “violations” of supervisory guidance; (iii) request for public comment does not mean the guidance has the force and effect of law; (iv) limit multiple issuances of guidance on the same topic; and (v) continue to emphasize the role of supervisory guidance to examiners and to supervised institutions.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance Federal Reserve CFPB FDIC NCUA OCC Supervision Examination Enforcement

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  • OCC notifies banks of 18-month on-site examination qualifications

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On September 10, the OCC notified national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches and agencies of the interim final rule issued jointly by the OCC, Federal Reserve, and FDIC allowing qualified insured depository institutions with less than $3 billion in total assets to be eligible for an 18-month on-site examination cycle. (See previous InfoBytes coverage here.) In addition to meeting the asset threshold, qualifying banks must also (i) have a rating of one or two; (ii) be well capitalized and well managed; (iii) not be subject to a federal banking agency’s formal enforcement proceeding or order; and (iv) not have experienced a change of control within the previous 12 months. The OCC further noted that it reserves the authority to maintain more frequent examinations for banks if necessary or appropriate. The interim final rule, issued pursuant to the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (previously Senate bill S. 2155), took effect August 29. Comments on the interim final rule must be received by October 29.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC Examination S. 2155 Federal Reserve FDIC

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  • CFPB issues summer 2018 Supervisory Highlights

    Federal Issues

    On September 6, the CFPB released its summer 2018 Supervisory Highlights, which outlines its supervisory and oversight actions in the areas of auto loan servicing, credit card account management, debt collection, mortgage servicing, payday lending, and small business lending. The findings of the report cover examinations that generally were completed between December 2017 and May 2018. Highlights of the examination findings include:

    • Auto loan servicing. The Bureau determined that billing statements showing “paid-ahead” status after insurance proceeds from a total vehicle loss were applied, where consumers were treated as late if they failed to pay the next month, were deceptive. The Bureau also found that servicers unfairly repossessed vehicles after the repossession should have been canceled because the account was not coded correctly, or because an agreement with consumer was reached.
    • Credit card account management. The Bureau found that companies failed to reevaluate accounts for eligibility for a rate reduction under Regulation Z or failed to appropriately reduce annual percentage rates.
    • Debt collection. The Bureau found that debt collectors failed to mail debt verifications to consumers before engaging in continued debt collection, activities as required by the FDCPA.
    • Mortgage servicing. The Bureau found that mortgage servicers delayed processing permanent modifications after consumers successfully completed their trial modifications, resulting in accrued interest and fees that would not otherwise have accrued, which the Bureau determined was an unfair act or practice.
    • Payday lending. The Bureau found that companies threatened to repossess consumer vehicles, notwithstanding that they generally did not  actually do so or have a business relationship with an entity capable of doing so, which the Bureau determined was a deceptive practice. The Bureau also found that companies did not obtain valid preauthorized EFT authorizations for debits initiated using debit card numbers or ACH credentials provided for other purposes, in violation of Regulation E.
    • Small business lending. The Bureau found that some institutions collect and maintain only limited data on small business lending decisions, which it determined could impede the institution’s ability to monitor ECOA risk. The Bureau noted positive exam findings including, (i) active oversight of an entity’s CMS framework; (ii) maintaining records of policy and procedure updates; and (iii) self-conducted semi-annual ECOA risk assessments, which included small business lending.

    The report notes that in response to most examination findings, the companies have already remediated or have plans to remediate affected consumers and implement corrective actions, such as new policies in procedures.

    Finally, the report highlights, among other things, (i) two recent enforcement actions that were a result of supervisory activity (covered by InfoBytes here and here); (ii) recent updates to the mortgage servicing rule and TILA-RESPA integrated disclosure rule (covered by InfoBytes here and here); and (iii) HMDA implementation updates (covered by InfoBytes here).

    Federal Issues CFPB Auto Finance Payday Lending Debt Collection Mortgage Servicing Credit Cards Supervision Examination

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  • OCC updates Comptroller’s Handbook, issues guidance on “other real estate owned”

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On August 31, the OCC issued Bulletin 2018-26, which updates the “Other Real Estate Owned” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook and provides guidance for examiners on the acquisition, reporting, management, and disposition of other real estate owned (OREO) held by supervised banks and federal savings associations. The OCC commented that while the booklet’s focus is on foreclosed real property, the guidance may also “apply to other types of foreclosed (repossessed) property, such as consumer and commercial goods, financial instruments, and intangible assets.” Foreclosed assets for reporting purposes include “loans where a bank has received physical possession of a borrower’s assets, regardless of whether formal proceedings take place.” Additional updates include (i) accounting changes for OREO sales by public and non-public business entities; (ii) interim guidance for federal savings associations on the OREO holding period; and (iii) clarifications concerning supervisory guidance and risk management practices, including third-party risk management guidance issued since the booklet was last published in 2013.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC Comptroller's Handbook Examination

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  • Agencies issue interim final rules to comply with EGRRCPA

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On August 22 and 23, the OCC, Federal Reserve, and FDIC (Agencies) jointly issued two interim final rules to comply with the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (EGRRCPA) (previously Senate bill S.2155).

    On August 22, the Agencies issued an interim final rule amending the liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) rule to treat certain eligible municipal securities as high-quality liquid assets. The LCR rule applies to banking organizations that have $250 billion or more in total assets or that have $10 billion or more in foreign exposures, and to their subsidiaries that have assets of $10 billion, as required by Section 403 of EGRRCPA. According to the FDIC’s Financial Institution Letter, FIL-43-2018, the interim final rule amends the LCR rule to (i) add liquid, readily-marketable, and investment grade municipal obligations to the list of assets eligible for treatment as level 2B liquid assets; (ii) include a definition for “municipal obligations”; and (iii) add a reference to the Federal Reserve’s definition of “liquid and readily-marketable.” The rule takes effect upon publication in the Federal Register and comments are due within 30 days of publication.

    On August 23, the Agencies issued an additional interim final rule allowing a lengthened examination cycle for an expanded number of qualifying insured depository institutions and U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks. Specifically, as authorized by EGRRCPA, the interim final rule would allow qualifying insured depository institutions with less than $3 billion in total assets (an increase from the previous threshold of $1 billion) to be eligible for an 18-month on-site examination cycle. The rule takes effect upon publication in the Federal Register and comments are due within 60 days of publication.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance S. 2155 Bank Supervision Examination Liquidity Standards FDIC OCC Federal Reserve

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  • CFPB Succession: Bureau reportedly no longer examining for MLA compliance

    Federal Issues

    According to reports citing “internal agency documents,” acting Director of the CFPB Mick Mulvaney intends to cease supervisory examinations of the Military Lending Act (MLA), contending the law does not explicitly prescribe the Bureau the authority to examine financial institutions for compliance with the MLA. In 2013, amendments to the MLA granted enforcement authority to the same agencies with administrative enforcement power under TILA, including the Bureau, but these amendments did not also provide these same agencies with the statutory authority to supervise institutions for compliance with the MLA. The Bureau currently includes the MLA in the statutory- and regulation-based procedures section of the Supervision and Examination Manual and has not released a formal statement in response to reports of this supervisory change.

    Federal Issues Supervision Compliance Examination Military Lending Act CFPB

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  • CFPB updates “workpapers” section of Supervision and Examination Manual

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    In August, the CFPB released an updated version of the Supervision and Examination Manual, which includes minor changes to the workpapers section of the examination process and an updated scope summary template. According to the manual, workpapers are the records documenting the review conducted by examiners to reach conclusions about the financial institution’s compliance with federal consumer protection laws. The manual emphasizes that “[a]ll information collected and all records created during the review that are used to support findings and conclusions could potentially be included in the workpapers” and all workpapers must be reviewed and signed off by the examiner in charge. The Bureau requires all workpapers and related documentation to be maintained in electronic form.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance CFPB Examination Supervision Compliance

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  • Washington state updates mortgage provisions of Consumer Loan Act

    State Issues

    On July 24, the Washington Department of Financial Institutions adopted new mortgage-related provisions of the state’s Consumer Loan Act (CLA). In addition to technical changes and certain definition modifications, the rulemaking, among other things, (i) adds a requirement that if electronic records are stored using a closed service, the service must be located in the U.S. or its territories; (ii) prohibits certain servicing activities, such as receiving payments and collection activities, from being conducted outside the U.S. or its territories; and (iii) requires servicers to maintain a compliance management system with the functionalities that are described in the CFPB’s Supervision and Examination Manual. The rulemaking is effective September 1.

    State Issues State Regulators Mortgages Mortgage Servicing Compliance Examination CFPB

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  • OCC issues update to Comptroller’s Handbook

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On July 23, the OCC issued Bulletin 2018-20, which announced revisions to the “Capital and Dividends” booklet of the Comptroller’s Handbook as mandated by the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act. The revised booklet—which applies to all OCC-supervised bank examinations—includes changes to the regulatory capital rule, reflects the integration of the OTS into the OCC, and includes expanded examination procedures for capital, dividends, and capital adequacy.  

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC Comptroller's Handbook Examination S. 2155

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