OCC updates rules for bank, FSA activities and operations

A final rule that updates or eliminates outdated regulatory requirements that “no longer reflect the modern financial system,” incorporates or codifies agency interpretations, and more is set to take effect April 1, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) said in a bulletin Wednesday.

The final rule also clarifies and codifies recent OCC interpretations, integrates certain regulations for national banks and federal savings associations (FSAs), and makes other technical and conforming changes, the notice states.

The OCC said the final rule, among other things:

  • Incorporates and streamlines OCC interpretations addressing permissible derivatives activities for national banks.
  • Codifies OCC interpretations to permit national banks and FSAs to engage in certain tax equity finance transactions.
  • Codifies OCC interpretations regarding national bank membership in payment systems and clarifies that FSAs are subject to the same requirements as national banks.
  • Expands the ability of national banks and FSAs to choose corporate governance provisions under state law.
  • Clarifies the extent to which a national bank may adopt anti-takeover provisions permissible under state corporate governance law.
  • Codifies OCC interpretations of the National Bank Act relating to capital stock issuances and repurchases.
  • Clarifies when national bank participation in a financial literacy program on the premises of, or a facility used by, a school or other organization would not be a branch.
  • Applies rules relating to finder activities, indemnification, equity kickers, postal services, independent undertakings, and hours and closings to FSAs.

The OCC said its final rule (the proposal was issued in June) is a continuation of the OCC’s regulatory review process and accompanies other OCC efforts to modernize OCC rules, remove unnecessary burden, and clarify requirements. Among those efforts, it said, are this month’s revisions on licensing and an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) that requested comment on revising the OCC’s regulations regarding the use of digital technology by national banks and FSAs.

OCC Bulletin 2020-111

Reg lookup: Activities and Operations of National Banks and Federal Savings Associations