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Travis Nelson to Speak on BSA/AML Enforcement and Cannabis Banking at NJ Bankers Conference

On Wednesday, June 20, 2018, Travis Nelson, a partner in Reed Smith’s Financial Services Regulatory Group, will present a lecture at the 2018 New Jersey Bankers Association’s Compliance University on two hot topics in bank regulation.  In the area of Cannabis Banking, the current political and regulatory environment has left many banks and their legal … Continue Reading

Treasury Secretary Suggests Greener Pastures for Marijuana Banking

On Tuesday February 6, 2018, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in a speech before the House Financial Services Committee, offered some insights into how the Treasury Department may respond the growing area of marijuana banking. As we reported in a January 5th client alert, the Justice Department rescinded Obama-era policies that provided guidance to federal … Continue Reading

Senators Announce Bipartisan Deal to Ease Banking Regulations

On November 13, 2017, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo, along with several Democratic senators, announced an agreement on bipartisan financial reform legislation. The proposed legislation aims to lower the number of banks considered “systemically important” and thus subject to enhanced bank supervision rules.  The legislation also contains provisions aimed at easing the regulatory burdens … Continue Reading

Blunt Talk on Marijuana Banking in New Jersey

On Wednesday, October 11, 2017, Reed Smith Princeton attorneys Travis Nelson and Kristy Keiser will lead a discussion at the quarterly meeting of the Banking Law Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association. In addition to the meeting’s regularly scheduled agenda items, including planning for future CLE programs, and discussion of recent and pending … Continue Reading

Crypto Token Cyber Crimes the New Focus for SEC

September 28, 2017 Two months after its Investor Bulletin stating that U.S. securities laws may apply to digital token sales, the Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) announced Monday two new initiatives to address cyber-based threats and protect retail investors.  The SEC’s press release outlined the creation of the Cyber Unit (“Unit”) and the Retail Strategy Task … Continue Reading

Federal Regulator Issues Proposed Rule Aimed at Incentive Compensation Policies of Banking Organizations

On April 21, 2016, the National Credit Union Administration (collectively, with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Treasury, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Federal Housing Finance Agency, and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the “Regulators”), issued a proposed rule (the “Proposed Rule”) designed to ensure that … Continue Reading

OCC Announces Shift in Enforcement Policy: Increased Focus on Internal Risk Management and Personal Liability of Bankers

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”), the primary federal regulator for most large banks, recently issued a new policy on agency enforcement actions seeking civil money penalties (“CMPs”) against institutions and individuals.  There are several key developments that will directly affect institutions and the directors, officers, employees, major shareholders, and vendors associated … Continue Reading

FinCEN Proposes AML Regulations for Investment Advisers

In August 2015, the Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) proposed regulations that would require investment advisers subject to SEC registration to establish anti-money laundering (AML) programs.1 The proposal also adds such investment advisers to the definition of “financial institutions” under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA), which consequently requires them to report … Continue Reading

Robert Jaworski Writes on National Credit Reporting Agencies Amending Practices

Reed Smith’s Robert Jaworski recently wrote an article on New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s settlement agreement (Agreement) with the three national consumer reporting agencies (CRAs). In the article, he provides a summary of the Agreement and the impact of the settlement on CRAs, users of the credit reports, those that furnish the CRAs with … Continue Reading

FinCEN Speech Outlines “Core Principles” on Enforcement

A recent Reed Smith Client Alert discusses a June 2015 speech by Stephanie Brooker, Associate Director for Enforcement at the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”). Although Ms. Brooker’s comments were specifically directed at the casino and card club industries, she discussed six “core principles” that have and will continue to guide FinCEN’s BSA/AML enforcement activities … Continue Reading

Travis Nelson Elected to Leadership Role in New Jersey Banking Bar

On May 15, 2015, the Banking Law Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association (“NJSBA”) held its annual meeting in Atlantic City, N.J., in conjunction with the NJSBA’s Annual Meeting. In addition to other informational and educational programs, the Banking Law Section conducted its biannual election of officers, electing Reed Smith’s Travis Nelson as … Continue Reading

OCC Issues Final Rule on Integration of Federal Savings Association – National Bank Licensing Rules

Title III of the Dodd-Frank Act transferred to the OCC all functions of the former Office of Thrift Supervision (“OTS”) and the Director of the OTS relating to federal savings associations.  12 U.S.C. § 5412(b)(2)(C).  This effectively dissolved the OTS and brought the chartering and primary supervisory responsibilities as to federally chartered banks and savings associations … Continue Reading

Travis Nelson to Speak on Examinations and Enforcement at NJ Bankers’ Compliance University

On Wednesday, March 25, 2015, Travis Nelson, of Reed Smith’s Princeton and New York offices, will give his annual lecture at the New Jersey Bankers Association’s Compliance University. This year Travis will focus on recent developments and trends in examinations and enforcement, covering a cross-section of topics, including proposed changes to the federal mortgage servicing … Continue Reading

Reed Smith’s Stephanie Wilson Addresses Regulators’ Policy on Diversity and Inclusion at Financial Institutions

Reed Smith’s Stephanie Wilson recently told The Legal Intelligencer that she fielded many calls about Dodd-Frank Act’s section 342, which regulates diversity and inclusion in the financial industry, when the law was first passed in 2010. While it was soon “overshadowed” by other, more financially immediate sections, she says the questions about section 342 are … Continue Reading

How Many SARs Does It Take to Find Yourself in Regulators’ Crosshairs? Answer: None

Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Enforcement Division Director Andrew Ceresney, recently drew attention when he announced that the SEC intends to include among its enforcement priorities compliance with the Bank Secrecy Act (the “BSA”). Ceresney’s comments, made during SIFMA’s 2015 Anti-Money Laundering and Financial Crimes Conference, focused on broker-dealers and the SEC’s concern that broker-dealers … Continue Reading

Spotlight on Fair Lending

The past several months have seen numerous important happenings under fair lending developments, both in the courts, by the DOJ, and by at least one state attorney general. DOJ Blog Posting On August 1, Greg Friel, Deputy Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Division, U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), posted a blog entitled “Protecting Borrowers … Continue Reading

OFAC Targets Russia’s Financial and Energy Sectors in New Sectoral Sanctions

Our Global Regulatory Enforcement colleagues, Hena M. Schommer and Leigh T. Hansson, recently wrote about the the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control’s (“OFAC”) issuance of new sanctions targeting Russian banks and energy companies. To read the post, please click here.… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Clarifies Scope of Federal Bank Fraud Statute, But Leaves Some Questions

On June 23, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court clarified – and arguably expanded – the reach of the federal bank fraud statute. In Loughrin v. U.S., petitioner Kevin Loughrin challenged the lower court’s interpretation of the federal bank fraud statute as not requiring that the government prove that the defendant specifically intended to defraud a … Continue Reading

Banking on Cybersecurity: New York State Introduces New Assessment Measures

This post was also written by Timothy Nagle and Christopher Fatherley. The New York Department of Financial Services (“DFS”) has joined the growing chorus of financial regulators expressing heightened concern for bank cybersecurity preparedness. On May 6, 2014 New York’s Governor Andrew M. Cuomo released a 13 page “horizontal perspective” entitled Report on Cyber Security in … Continue Reading

Legalized Marijuana Guidance Leaves Some Banks Dazed and Confused

Last week, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (“FinCEN”) issued new guidance in response to several states passing legislation to legalize marijuana for medical purposes, and in some states, for recreational purposes as well. This has left many financial institutions scratching their heads as to how to comply with the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”), which requires … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Cites Code of Hammurabi’s Goat-Stealing Regulations in Credit Card Fee Case

It is not every day that you read a court citing to “the Code of Hammurabi’s goat-stealing regulations” when it discusses the constitutionality of credit card late fees and overlimit fees; however, when it comes to the Wild West’s Ninth Circuit, anything is possible. On January 21, the Ninth Circuit issued its decision in In … Continue Reading

Reed Smith’s Michael Bleier Discusses Impact of Volcker Rule

Michael E. Bleier, a partner in Reed Smith’s Financial Services Regulatory Group, was recently quoted by the National Law Journal regarding the long-awaited Volcker Rule that was finalized by federal regulators December 10. Among other things, the Volcker Rule – named after former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker – prevents financial institutions from making short-term … Continue Reading

FDIC Issues Warning on D&O Liability Insurance Policies

On October 10, 2013, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) issued Financial Institution Letter 47-2013 to warn insured depository institutions of two areas of concern for director and officer insurance policies. First, the FDIC has noted an increase in exclusionary terms or provisions contained in institutions’ D&O insurance policies “that may adversely affect the recruitment … Continue Reading