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21 11, 2022

DAILY112122

2022-11-21T17:37:05-05:00November 21st, 2022|2- Daily Briefing|

FRB-NY Considers Why Deposit Rates are Now So Sticky

As Karen Petrou’s talk last week noted, Democrats and the CFPB have charged that exploitation explains why bank deposit rates now lag Fed rate hikes.  Today’s post from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York finds a steady decline in bank deposit-rate matches to Fed rate hikes since 1994, but also identifies market factors that largely explain rate sluggishness.  The study estimates the “deposit beta” – i.e., the difference between FOMC hikes and all deposit rates (including non-interest paying funds) found in BHC data.

Senate Dems Demand Digital-Asset Crackdown

Following last week’s hearings with the banking agencies (see Client Report REFORM214), Chairman Brown (D-OH) and Senate Banking Democrats today sent letters urging Vice Chair Barr, Acting Chairman Gruenberg, and Acting Comptroller Hsu to review SoFi’s digital asset activities, accusing the firm of improperly expanding its crypto trading following commitments not to do so when it was granted licenses as a national bank and BHC.  Following the playbook of pressing for rules and enforcement rather than new law, Senators point to a new SoFi service they believe is not only an “expanded” digital-asset activity despite a commitment to wind down these impermissible activities, but also is dangerous to investors and unsafe and unsound.

Daily112122.pdf

18 11, 2022

Al112122

2022-11-18T16:46:22-05:00November 18th, 2022|3- This Week|

Things To Come

Last week, banking-agency supervisory heads found themselves before Congressional Committees that – at least in the House – will look very different in the next Congress.  As Karen Petrou’s remarks last week made clear, only some legislation will be enacted into law, but many inquiries and investigations will put the Fed, OCC, and FDIC on very hot seats.  The heat will be hottest on the right when it comes to HFSC and around the circumference of the seat in the Senate, where only the little bit that’s left of the middle is likely to view many banking-agency actions with the deference that was once the norm for all but the highest-profile or most-disastrous calls.

Al112122.pdf

16 11, 2022

REFORM215

2022-11-22T15:02:46-05:00November 16th, 2022|5- Client Report|

HFSC Session Brings Crypto Action to Fore, “Holistic” Capital Under Scrutiny

HFSC today largely focused bank regulators on the same range of questions posed at yesterday’s Senate Banking session (see Client Report REFORM214).  However, Chairwoman Waters (D-CA) emphasized the importance of federal legislation in sharp contrast to Chairman Brown (D-OH), also announcing a hearing in December on FTX.  Ranking Member McHenry (R-NC), who will become HFSC chairman in the next Congress, concurred with the chairwoman’s views on the need for digital-finance statutory reform.  However, he took strong issue with inter-agency policy with regard to new capital rules, merger restrictions, and third-party relationship constraints.  Republican members also targeted Vice Chairman Barr’s holistic capital review, arguing that banks are currently well capitalized and that additional standards would hamper lending.  Mr. Barr indicated that an SLR rewrite is part of the holistic review but not immediately necessary to quell Treasury-market volatility or illiquidity.  As discussed in more detail below, regulators promised banking-sector crypto rules at least as stringent as Basel’s proposal.

REFORM215.pdf

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15 11, 2022

REFORM214

2022-11-22T15:27:38-05:00November 15th, 2022|5- Client Report|

Crypto, Deposit Rates, Capital Top Senate Discussion

At today’s Senate Banking oversight hearing with the banking agencies, Chairman Brown (D-OH) generally applauded the work of regulators, emphasizing the need for tough standards, like-kind rules for bigtech companies, and an inquiry into why depositor interest rates lag Fed rate hikes along lines posed earlier by Sen. Reed (D-RI).  FDIC Acting Chairman Gruenberg concurred, criticizing banks for sluggish rates.  Ranking Member Toomey (R-PA) reiterated his longstanding complaints about regulators straying outside their mission in areas such as climate change.  He also called for SLR relief to reduce Treasury-market risk and opposed pending large-bank resolution guidance (see FSM Report LIVINGWILL19) on grounds that it is unnecessary.

REFORM214.pdf

14 11, 2022

DAILY111422

2022-11-14T17:00:05-05:00November 14th, 2022|2- Daily Briefing|

FSB Thinks 2020 Reg Relief Could Go, Stay – It All Depends

In conjunction with the G20 summit, the FSB has released a policy paper assessing the extent to which various pandemic-related regulatory forbearances should be continued.

FSB Reiterates Climate, Crypto, NBFI Plans

The FSB head’s letter to the G20 today reiterates all of the priorities expressed in its October letter to G20 finance ministers.

Regulatory Hearings to Address Last-Gasp 2022 Agenda, Position Panels for a Busy New Year

With GOP House and Democratic Senate control largely assured, this week’s hearings with Messrs. Barr, Gruenberg, Harper, and Hsu will illuminate not only current priorities – most notably what’s next for federal crypto law and rule – but also the very different priorities HFSC and Senate Banking will advance in the next Congress.

FRB-NY Staff: Big U.S. Banks Remain Extremely Resilient

In its latest assessment of the vulnerability of the fifty largest U.S. BHCs, Federal Reserve Bank of New York staff confirmed the overall rosy assessment of bank resilience in the Board’s latest financial-stability report (see Client Report SYSTEMIC94).

OCC Ramps Up Fair-Lending Enforcement

In remarks delivered for Acting Comptroller Hsu, Senior Deputy Comptroller for Bank Supervision Policy Grovetta Gardineer reiterated that ensuring fairness is a top OCC priority.

Gruenberg Finally Gets the Nod

Knowing now that he has secured Democratic Senate control into next year, President Biden today finally and formally nominated Acting FDIC Chairman Gruenberg to assume the chairmanship.

Daily111422.pdf

14 10, 2022

AL101722

2022-10-14T17:07:31-04:00October 14th, 2022|3- This Week|

Ouch?

Later this week, the FDIC board will decide whether to hike DIF premiums as proposed earlier this year (see FSM Report DEPOSITINSURANCE114).  The banking industry is arrayed against this not only because it’s costly, but also – as our analysis addressed – procyclical.  We will provide clients with an in-depth analysis of the final rule along with the meeting, which now also includes a certain vote in favor of FDIC agreement to the ANPR released late last week by the Fed asking an array of questions on large-bank resolvability.  We will also provide clients with an in-depth analysis of this ANPR along with the accompanying orders setting new merger policy by way of the Fed and OCC decisions on the USB/MSFG transaction.  These actions make it clear that mergers will be approved even in the absence of the formal Fed policy promised by Vice Chairman Barr, but the terms and conditions will be considerably stricter than was the case just a year ago for other super-regional transactions.

Al101722.pdf

14 10, 2022

DAILY101422

2022-10-14T17:04:18-04:00October 14th, 2022|2- Daily Briefing|

Along with a Squeaker Merger Approval, Fed/FDIC Begin Work on Large-Bank Resolvability

As anticipated in Karen Petrou’s speech yesterday, the Fed today unanimously approved and the FDIC will shortly do the same on an advance notice of proposed rulemaking re-enforcing large-bank resolvability.  That this complex rulemaking will not slow near-term merger decisions was made clear today also by the Fed and OCC decisions to clear USB’s acquisition of MSFG’s California banking organization.

Covid Comm Presses CFPB for Still More Credit-Reporting Reform

The Chairman of the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis, Rep. James Clyburn (D-NC) sent a letter to CFPB Director Chopra requesting that the Bureau investigate the three nationwide consumer reporting agencies (NCRAs) for failing to properly address credit reporting errors.  Citing data, the Subcommittee obtained from the NCRAs, Chairman Clyburn alleges that reporting errors occurred far more often than previously thought, that the majority of disputes do not result in consumer relief, and that the NCRAs discarded “tens of millions” of submissions without investigation by claiming they came from unauthorized third-parties.

Waller Dismisses Threat To Reserve Dollar Without A CBDC

In remarks today, FRB Governor Waller reiterated his skepticism of foreign-issued CBDCs and stablecoins, arguing that the underlying reasons for dollar dominance are non-technological and CBDCs will not affect them.  He dismisses concerns that foreign CBDCs would undermine dollar dominance because they could neither reduce payment frictions nor prevent illicit finance.

Daily101422.pdf

12 10, 2022

DAILY101222

2022-10-12T16:58:59-04:00October 12th, 2022|2- Daily Briefing|

ECB Staff: Retail CBDC Success May Hang on Interest-Rate Inducements

A new paper from European Central Bank staff looks not so much at CBDC policy objectives, but at whether central banks can achieve them and still satisfy the needs of retail depositors and businesses.  Based in part on two small, failed CBDC ventures, the paper concludes that CBDC adoption will prove harder than policy focused CBDC analyses suggest.

Barr Accepts Crypto Activities In Banks But Demands New Safety Rules, Consumer Standards

Although he did not adopt Acting Comptroller Hsu’s attack yesterday on cryptoassets, Fed Vice Chair Barr today made it clear that the Fed believes, as it and global regulators repeatedly say, that the same risks should be covered by the same rules.  Mr. Barr does believe that cryptoasset activities may be appropriate for banks if appropriate standards and internal controls are in place, noting that the Fed is now moving past its own supervisory guidance (see FSM Report CRYPTO31) to work with the FDIC and OCC to craft additional standards.

IOSCO Releases Global Online Marketing, Enforcement Standards

IOSCO today increased its focus on digitalization, moving away from longstanding edicts regarding monitoring to a set of specific standards for supervision and enforcement.  IOSCO urges supervisors to require firms to have online marketing-and-distribution standards as well as protocols governing online onboarding.

Daily101222.pdf

7 09, 2022

DAILY090722

2022-11-09T16:08:53-05:00September 7th, 2022|2- Daily Briefing|

Hsu Expands on Crypto, Climate, Merger, Systemic Actions

Acting Comptroller Hsu today made it clear that – contrary to assertions from Sen. Warren (D-MA) and others – his decision not to rescind prior OCC crypto charters and related rulings does not mean the agency is taking anything other than a cautious approach to cryptoassets.  He also indicated that the slow-down in interagency action is warranted as it gives officials time to understand recent shocks to this sector.

New Brainard Position Suggests Fed CBDC Thinking Advances

In addition to hawkish anti-inflation remarks, Fed Vice Chair Brainard today appeared to back away from her prior comments espousing an expansive view of how a U.S. CBDC might work (see Client Report CBDC13).  Now calling CBDC a “neutral settlement layer” affording additional stability and opposing a consumer-facing model.

Barr Takes Stage With Bold Plans For Capital, Resolution, Mergers

In his maiden speech today, Fed supervisory Vice Chair Michael Barr made several significant announcements.  Reiterating the support for holistic capital regulation noted during his confirmation, Mr. Barr confirmed that the Fed will undertake a sweeping review of standards to address unintended consequences without reducing capital requirements.  The Board will also begin action on the Basel “end-game” later this fall.

Daily090722.pdf

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