Financial Services Committee

House Committee on Financial Services Comments on OCC Fintech Charter

 

All 34 Republican members of the Financial Services Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives, including Chairman Jeb Hensarling (Tex. – R) and Vice Chairman Patrick McHenry (N.C. – R), in a letter dated March 10, 2017, to Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry, urged the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC“) not to “rush” the decision to create special purpose national bank charters for fintech companies without giving stakeholders the opportunity to see the details of the prospective charter and the opportunity to comment, and also without giving the incoming Comptroller the opportunity to assess the charter after Comptroller Curry’s term expires in April 2017. The letter advises Comptroller Curry that if such opportunities for review, comment and assessment are not provided, “Congress will examine the OCC’s actions and, if appropriate, overturn them.” A number of banks, community bank organizations and others previously provided comments to the OCC urging the OCC to assure that there will be a level playing field for newly chartered fintech banks and existing banks.

SEC’s 2013 Budget Request Sheds Light on its Enforcement and Disclosure Priorities

On February 13, the Obama administration proposed large budget increases for key financial market regulators, including the SEC and CFTC.  The SEC’s fiscal year 2013 Congressional Budget request seeks more than $1.56 billion in appropriations, an 18.5% increase over its fiscal year 2012 budget.  On March 6, by a 25- 17 vote largely along party lines, the U.S. House of Representatives’ Financial Services Committee rejected an amendment introduced by ranking member Representative Barney Frank to support the administration’s budget request. Lost among the publicity is the story behind the numbers, which gives greater insight into the SEC’s key enforcement and disclosure priorities in the Dodd-Frank era.  Given the SEC’s current understaffing it remains an open question whether the Commission can achieve its objectives. 
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