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News Release 2020-158 | November 23, 2020

OCC Finalizes Update to Activities and Operations Rule

WASHINGTON—The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today issued a final rule that updates its rules for national bank and federal savings association activities and operations.

The rule is part of the OCC’s continuous effort to modernize its rules and remove unnecessary requirements to relieve banks of unnecessary burden, encourage economic opportunity, and promote the safe, sound, and fair operation of the federal banking system.

The amendments take effect April 1, 2021.

The final rule changes 12 CFR 7 to update or eliminate outdated regulatory requirements that no longer reflect the modern financial system and to clarify and codify recent OCC interpretations. Among the changes are:

  • incorporating and streamlining interpretations addressing permissible derivatives activities for national banks;
  • codifying interpretations to permit national banks and federal savings associations to engage in certain tax equity finance transactions;
  • codifying interpretations regarding national bank membership in payment systems and clarifying that federal savings associations are subject to the same requirements as national banks;
  • expanding the ability of national banks and federal savings associations to choose corporate governance provisions under state law;
  • clarifying the extent to which national banks may adopt anti-takeover provisions permissible under state corporate governance law;
  • clarifying when national bank participation in a financial literacy program on the premises of, or a facility used by, a school or other organization would not be a branch;
  • codifying interpretations of the National Bank Act relating to capital stock issuances and repurchases; and
  • applying rules relating to finder activities, indemnification, equity kickers, postal services, independent undertakings, and hours and closings to federal savings associations.

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Bryan Hubbard
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