In Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases, two critical documents are the disclosure statement and the plan. These documents represent the culmination of a case and provide a roadmap for the debtor’s path forward. A Chapter 11 plan can be a plan of reorganization, where the debtor emerges from bankruptcy as a reorganized entity, or a plan of liquidation, where the debtor’s remaining assets are liquidated and the proceeds are distributed to creditors. The plan outlines how creditor claims will be paid and, in the case of reorganization, provides that a debtor is fully discharged from its prior debts.

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s (FINRA) Enforcement Division recently announced its first settlement involving a firm’s supervision of social media influencers. The respondent, M1 Finance LLC (M1), is a financial technology company that provides self-directed trading to retail investors through its mobile application and website. In connection with FINRA’s targeted exam of M1’s use of social media influencers to acquire new customers, FINRA found that social media posts made by influencers on the firm’s behalf were not fair or balanced, or contained exaggerated, unwarranted, promissory, or misleading claims. According to FINRA, M1 also failed to establish, maintain, and enforce a reasonably designed supervisory system for its influencers’ social media posts, and failed to preapprove and preserve records of these retail communications.

On April 4, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a stay on the implementation of its newly enacted climate impact disclosure rules. This decision is connected to a challenge to the rules currently pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, which is a consolidation of numerous lawsuits that hit the SEC following the rule announcement on March 6. The SEC adopted a scaled-back version of its initial 2022 proposal, requiring large public companies to report their greenhouse gas emissions, climate-related risks to their businesses, and the financial harm caused by extreme weather events, in their registration statements and annual reports. The reporting requirements were to be rolled out in stages, with the largest filers beginning disclosures in 2025.

Bankruptcy proceedings often involve preferences, a complex issue that can be mitigated or eliminated through several affirmative defenses provided by the Bankruptcy Code. This article focuses on one such defense: the contemporaneous exchange defense, codified in 11 U.S.C. § 547(c)(1). This defense encourages creditors to continue business with companies potentially facing bankruptcy and protects transfers intended as a contemporaneous exchange for new value given to the debtor.

On March 29, a Texas federal court granted a preliminary injunction enjoining the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (collectively, the agencies) from implementing their Final Rule modernizing how they assess lenders’ compliance under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA). Notably, the court found the plaintiffs demonstrated a substantial likelihood of success on the claim that the Final Rule violates the CRA, indicating how the district court will likely find on the merits.

On March 29, the Federal Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), in collaboration with other federal agencies, issued a Notice and Request for Information and Comment (Notice and Request) seeking public comment on its proposal to amend the Customer Identification Program (CIP) Rule requirement for banks to collect a taxpayer identification number, among other information, from a U.S. customer prior to opening an account. Usually, for a U.S. customer this requires banks to collect a full Social Security number (SSN). The amendment comes in response to pressure from fintechs, specifically providers of buy-now, pay-later products that rely on bank partners, for an accommodation from the CIP Rule.

Today, a divided Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s (FDIC) Board of Directors issued a proposed Statement of Policy (SOP) on bank merger transactions that would create a combined bank with more than $100 billion in assets. The proposed SOP would replace the FDIC’s current SOP on bank merger transactions and proposes a principles-based overview that describes