25 March 2017
visit nextgenbanking.co.uk

Comptroller Curry hits back at critics of fintech charter plans

07 March 2017  |  4398 views  |  1 US note back

Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry says the oversight body will persist with plans to offer banking charters to fintech companies, dismissing criticisms that the agency is over-reaching its authority.

In a speech to the LendIT conference in New York, Curry offered a stout defence to charges laid by banking trade bodies and state regulators over its plans.

"To be clear, the National Bank Act does give the OCC the legal authority to grant national bank charters to companies engaged in the business of banking," Curry told the conference. "That authority includes granting charters to companies that limit their business models to certain aspects of banking, and it is not circumscribed just because a company delivers banking services in new ways with innovative technology."

Curry says the agency received over 100 comments over its proposals, none more stinging than a letter from Maria Vullo of the New York State Department of Financial Services, warning that the OCC "should not use technological advances as an excuse to attempt to usurp state laws that already regulate fintech activities". The proposals, wrote Vullo would "imperil crucially important state-based consumer protection laws and increase the risks presented by nonbank entities".

"That's wrong," Curry fires back, pointing out that consumer protection has changed significantly since the financial crisis. "State laws that address anti-discrimination, fair lending, debt collection, taxation, zoning, crime, and torts, generally apply to national banks and will also apply to fintech companies that become national banks."

Nor is the OCC "somehow mixing banking and commerce", says Curry. "The OCC understands the importance of maintaining the longstanding separation of banking and commerce," he says. "Comingling banking and commerce could introduce risks associated with non-banking-related commercial activities, interfere with the allocation of credit, and foster anti-competitive effects and undesirable concentrations of economic power."

Curry says the OCC is working to publish a supplement to its existing Licensing Manual that will further clarify its approach to evaluating applications from fintech companies.

Comments: (1)

Henry Hilska
Henry Hilska - Convexity Solutions - New York | 07 March, 2017, 21:54

Beyond the turf war and which regulatory agency wins there is an important issue that will affect the future of banking.  Regulations can be difficult enough for most organizations but having a consistent set of rules across the US will be optimal as opposed to states maintaining different rules and priorities.

Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 thumb ups! (Log in to thumb up)
Comment on this story (membership required)

Finextra news in your inbox

For Finextra's free daily newsletter, breaking news flashes and weekly jobs board: sign up now

Related stories

New York regulator blasts OCC over bank charter plan for fintech firms

New York regulator blasts OCC over bank charter plan for fintech firms

17 January 2017  |  7703 views  |  1 comments | 22 tweets | 15 linkedin
US regulator cites fintech as risk to banking system

US regulator cites fintech as risk to banking system

06 January 2017  |  25447 views  |  1 comments | 57 tweets | 49 linkedin
OCC to offer fintech firms bank charter status

OCC to offer fintech firms bank charter status

02 December 2016  |  9530 views  |  1 comments | 25 tweets | 17 linkedin
OCC sets up fintech innovation office

OCC sets up fintech innovation office

27 October 2016  |  10487 views  |  0 comments | 19 tweets | 14 linkedin
OCC may create innovation unit to help banks compete with fintech firms

OCC may create innovation unit to help banks compete with fintech firms

13 August 2015  |  10766 views  |  0 comments | 28 tweets | 10 linkedin

Related company news

 

Related blogs

Create a blog about this story (membership required)
Participate in the surveyVisit capgemini.comvisit abe-eba.eu

Top topics

Most viewed Most shared
French retailer Carrefour launches online bank accountFrench retailer Carrefour launches online...
57048 views comments | 15 tweets | 35 linkedin
Can banks really win in the payments business of the future? – new Finextra reportCan banks really win in the payments busin...
8445 views comments | 23 tweets | 37 linkedin
European Commission opens public consultation on fintechEuropean Commission opens public consultat...
8117 views comments | 41 tweets | 25 linkedin
Westpac wants to take over your messaging keyboardWestpac wants to take over your messaging...
7037 views comments | 4 tweets | 10 linkedin
SecureKey taps IBM to put identity on the blockchainSecureKey taps IBM to put identity on the...
6902 views comments | 22 tweets | 15 linkedin

Featured job

Six Figure Base + Commission + Stock Options
London

Find your next job