On December 7, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) published the fall edition of its Semiannual Risk Perspective, which discusses key issues facing banks. From the OCC’s perspective, the overall strength of the banking system remains sound and recessionary pressures appear to be easing. The OCC notes that, while many economists had predicted a decline, gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of 2.1% in the second quarter of 2023, slowing just slightly from the first quarter’s 2.2% pace. However, the OCC also emphasized that inflation remains elevated and a slowing labor market, declining savings, and higher interest rates could cause financial stress to borrowers.
Under Section 922 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, Congress expanded protections for whistleblowers reporting possible violations of federal securities laws to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Specifically, the statute established certain financial incentives and confidentiality guarantees for whistleblowers reporting potential violations of securities laws. In 2011, the SEC implemented rules (as subsequently amended) regarding the Dodd-Frank whistleblower program. Under SEC Rule 21F-17(a), no person may take an action to impede an individual from communicating directly with the SEC about possible securities law violations, including by enforcing or threatening to enforce confidentiality agreements with respect to such communications (subject to certain limited exceptions).
Troutman Pepper Partner Sheri Adler recently joined Meredith Ervine on The Pay & Proxy Podcast from Compensation Standards, to discuss equity award delegations in Delaware. The podcast can be accessed here. Topics discussed include:
Troutman Pepper has been recognized for its exceptional work in the field of Banking & Finance and Financial Services Law in the 14th edition of Best Law Firms®. Our firm’s National Tier 1 rankings include Banking and Finance Law, Financial Services Regulation Law and Banking & Finance Litigation.
In a major victory for small business lenders, yesterday the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas granted motions filed by three groups of trade association intervenors to extend the court’s existing injunction against the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB or Bureau) enforcement of its final rule under § 1071 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Final Rule) to cover all small business lenders nationwide. A discussion of the preliminary injunction issued by that Texas federal court on July 31 can be found here. The injunction in Texas Bankers Association v. CFPB will dissolve if the U.S. Supreme Court reverses the Fifth Circuit in Community Financial Services Association v CFPB (CFSA case), which found the CFPB’s funding structure unconstitutional.
On October 24, the Federal Reserve Board (Fed), the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) (collectively, the agencies) finally issued their long-awaited final rule modernizing how they assess lenders’ compliance under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). The CRA was enacted in 1977 to address systemic inequities in access to credit and encourages banks to meet the credit needs of the entire community, including low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities, consistent with safety and soundness principles. The last meaningful, comprehensive revision to the CRA regulations occurred in 1995.
On October 19, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) dismissed its claims against Ripple Labs, Inc. (Ripple) executives Bradley Garlinghouse and Christian Larsen for allegedly aiding and abetting Ripple’s violations of the Securities Act with respect to its “institutional sales” of XRP. The Southern District of New York had deemed “institutional sales” to be unregistered securities in its July summary judgment decision, however, at that time the court reserved judgment as to the aiding and abetting claims against the executives. The matter was set for trial in 2024.
Yesterday, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) published a Small Entity Compliance Guide and updated its list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to assist entities in determining what steps will be required to comply with the beneficial ownership reporting requirements of the Corporate Transparency Act. The newly published guide includes various flow charts, tables, and hypothetical scenarios that are meant to assist members of the small business community with the analyses all companies must undertake in order to comply with the act, including determining whether a given company is or is not a “reporting company,” and determining each reporting company’s beneficial owners. FinCEN also published new FAQs and revised prior FAQs regarding the act and related reporting mechanics.
On September 8, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network of the U.S. Department of Treasury (FinCEN) issued an alert warning financial institutions to be vigilant against a prominent virtual currency investment scam called “pig butchering.” U.S. law enforcement currently estimates victims in the United States have lost billions of dollars to these types of scams.
Monday, September 11 • 10:35 AM – 11:05 AM
James Stevens, co-leader of Troutman Pepper’s Financial Services Industry Group, will be a speaker at the Bank Board Training Forum taking place from September 11 – 12, 2023.