Waller Reiterates Fed’s Wary Cryptoasset Policy
In remarks today, FRB Governor Waller reiterated the Fed’s wary approach to cryptoassets, repeating the Fed’s requirements (see FSM Report CRYPTO31) for banks that wish to engage with crypto customers or activities. Following the collapse of FTX and its ripple effect on banks such as Silvergate (see Client Report CRYPTO38), Mr. Waller stressed that banks engaging with crypto customers must have a thorough understanding of their client’s business models, risk management systems and corporate governance.
Hsu Reprises, Expands Bank Merger Reform
In remarks today, the OCC Chief Counsel on behalf of Acting Comptroller Hsu stressed the need to update competition metrics, financial stability considerations, and community assessments in bank merger reviews, but gave no indication of when new merger policy may be finalized. Mr. Hsu argued that while HHI is an objective and transparent metric, it is no longer suitable for measuring competition because its deposit share-based approach fails to capture the competitive effect of nonbanks and online banking.
FHFA Outlines Substantive FHLB Reform Agenda
As anticipated earlier this week, FHFA Director Thompson today called the status quo of the FHLB system unacceptable and said that FHFA will make “meaningful” recommendations to improve the sector. This will take shape in a report following completion of FHFA’s roundtable series concluding in March. FHFA’s report will make statutory recommendations to Congress and lay out its own regulatory objectives, perhaps starting with an ANPR and/or regulatory guidance or supervisory actions.