Regulatory Roundup

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Capital Standards

A proposal by the banking and thrift agencies to permanently allow banking companies to exclude asset-backed commercial paper and securitizations with early-amortization provisions from calculations of their risk-based assets. It would make other adjustments to risk-based capital requirements, too. Published Oct. 1. Comments due Nov. 17.

Home Loan Banks

A proposal by the Federal Housing Finance Board to require the 12 Home Loan banks to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission and expand the amount of public disclosures they make. Published Sept. 17. Comments due Jan. 15.

Insider Loans

A proposal by the Securities and Exchange Commission to exempt foreign banks from a ban on insider loans, which would put them on equal footing with U.S. lenders. Published Sept. 17. Comments due Oct. 17.

Identity Theft

Proposed guidelines by the banking and thrift regulators to deter identity theft. Banks would have to establish a system for identifying personal information at risk of being stolen and develop a response system for securing all accounts of victims and notifying customers in certain circumstances. Published Aug. 12. Comments due Tuesday.

Basel Committee I

An advance notice of proposed rulemaking by the four bank and thrift regulators detailing how the Basel II plan would be implemented in the United States. The regulators also issued a series of draft guidelines outlining how various pieces of the new rules would work. The guidelines focused on corporate credit and operational risk. Future ones are expected on retail credit and securitization. Published Aug. 4. Comments due Nov. 3.

Thrift Affiliates

The Office of Thrift Supervision issued a final rule Tuesday that requires savings institutions to follow the same rules as banks regarding transactions among affiliates. It was modeled after the Fed's Reg W and is set to take effect Nov. 6.

Complementary Powers

The Federal Reserve Board on Oct. 2 used its authority to deem an activity "complementary" to financial services for the first time. The Fed said Citigroup Inc. could keep its physical commodities business, a subsidiary called Phibro Inc., because agency officials decided such activities complement Citi's other business. Physical commodities were not on the list of activities in the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999 that are permissible for financial holding companies, and Citigroup's grandfathered rights to the business had been set to expire this month unless the Fed took action.

Credit Union Business Lending

The National Credit Union Administration on Sept. 24 issued a rule that eased its business-lending limits, but not as much as had been expected. Under the rule, credit unions must ask the NCUA for a waiver before exceeding the 12.25%-of-assets cap for nonmember loans and loan participations purchased from another credit union or from a credit union service organization. It also lets well-capitalized credit unions make unsecured loans, and it permits 100% financing of loans secured by trucks, tractors, and other heavy vehicles. The rule takes effect Oct. 31.

Patriot Act

The Treasury Department on Sept. 18 said it would leave unchanged a rule published in May and required by the USA Patriot Act that strengthened customer identification practices. The agency rejected requests by House Judiciary Committee Chairman James F. Sensenbrenner to make banks keep copies of driver's licenses and other documents identifying new customers and to prohibit the use of matricula consular cards and other documents issued by foreign governments as acceptable forms of identification. The rule took effect Oct. 1.


Tying I

The General Accounting Office is expected to deliver its report on allegations of illegal tying of banking products to Rep. …