Comment period for OCC proposal on bank mergers, policy statement extended by 60 days

There’s more time to comment on its proposal to update rules for business combinations, the national bank regulator said Wednesday, increasing the comment period by 60 days.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) noted that its proposal, issued in January, also includes a policy statement to clarify its review of applications under the Bank Merger Act (BMA).

The OCC said it made the extension of the period for comments – now due June 15 (they were due April 15) – “to allow interested parties more time to provide comments.”

In its proposal, the agency identified two “substantive” changes on mergers (“business combinations”):

  • Removal of provisions related to expedited review. The agency said any business combination subject to a filing is a significant corporate transaction requiring OCC decisioning, which should not be deemed approved solely due to the passage of time.
  • Removal of the OCC’s streamlined business combination application. The OCC said the Interagency Bank Merger Act Application (IBMA) provides the appropriate basis for the OCC to review a business combination application.

Regarding the policy statement meant to clarify its review of applications under the Bank Merger Act (BMA), it would, among other things, outline general principles the agency uses in its review of applications under the BMA and the OCC’s consideration of the financial stability, financial and managerial resources and future prospects, and convenience and needs factors, it said in January.

Additionally, the policy statement would address the criteria informing the OCC’s decision on whether to hold a public meeting on an application subject to the BMA, according to the agency.

OCC Extends Comment Period for Proposed Rulemaking and Policy Statement on Bank Mergers