Friday's News


July 6, 2018

This week, the federal regulatory agencies continued to work on implementing changes made necessary by the enactment of S. 2155. In Albany, the DFS sought to make it easier for marijuana businesses to do their banking.

State Regulatory Developments

  • The New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) issued guidance it says will help support the development of medical marijuana and industrial hemp businesses in New York by encouraging New York State-chartered banks and credit unions to establish banking relationships with these businesses. In response to media inquiries, NYBA President & CEO Mike Smith said: “The decision whether or not to accept any business customer – including medical marijuana-related businesses – rests with each individual New York State-chartered financial institution, based on its own risk assessment and business plan. In this regard, federal law continues to classify marijuana as illegal to produce, possess or dispense. As a result, New York banks have historically been reluctant to enter this line of business.”

Federal Regulatory Developments

  • The CFPB, FDIC, and OCC all issued statements regarding changes to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) requirements, as a result of the enactment of S.2155. More information will be released in a revised filing instructions guide, which the CFPB will publish later this summer.
  • The Federal Reserve and the FDIC are beginning the process of determining which financial institutions with assets below $250 billion will be subject to the requirement of submitting ‘living wills.’ Under S.2155, the Federal Reserve is no longer required to conduct the living will process on bank holding companies with less than $100 billion. The law also gives the Fed discretion to end the requirement for bank holding companies with assets below $250 billion.

Legal Developments

  • The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) filed a friend-of-the-court brief --something it rarely does – in the appeal of a Missouri case in which two mutual thrift depositors claim they were entitled to a distribution of the thrift’s capital at the time of the thrift’s merger with another institution. A district court dismissed the claim, and the plaintiffs are appealing the decision. The OCC argues in its brief that “granting depositors a right to compel a capital distribution could harm a bank’s safety and soundness and create risks to the Deposit Insurance Fund.”
  • In a major victory for title insurance agents, closers and underwriters, a judge yesterday annulled the strict anti-marketing regulations enacted earlier this year by the Department of Financial Services. Judge Eileen Rakower challenged DFS’ use of a state insurance law to prevent companies from engaging in ordinary marketing activities.

Contact Mike Smith at (212) 297-1699 or, Roberta Kotkin at (212) 297-1684 or or Clare Cusack at (212) 297-1664 or .
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Karen Armstrong, Senior Vice President, Communications and Political Action
Duncan McCausland
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