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On January 1, 2021, the United States Congress enacted the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020 (the “AMLA”), as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (the “Act”).  The AMLA includes extensive and fundamental reforms to anti-money laundering (“AML”) laws in the United States, including the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”).

In a previous client alert,

On January 1, 2021, the Senate voted to override President Trump’s veto of the National Defense Authorization Act (the “NDAA” or “Act”), which includes over 200 pages of significant reforms to the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”) and other anti-money laundering (“AML”) laws that have been working their way through Congress for several years.  The Senate’s

On December 8, 2020, the House passed the National Defense Authorization Act (the “NDAA” or “Act”), which includes over 200 pages of significant reforms to the Bank Secrecy Act (“BSA”) and other anti-money laundering (“AML”) laws that have been working their way through Congress for several years. Despite some remaining objections from President Trump and

On September 21, 2020, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (“OCC”) published a letter addressing the authority of nationals banks to hold deposits that serve as reserves for stablecoins, which is a type of cryptocurrency designed to have a stable value. The OCC concludes that national banks and federal savings associations may engage in certain stablecoin activities as described in the letter.
Continue Reading OCC Issues Guidance on National Banks and Stablecoin Activities

Yesterday, July 1, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council released a Joint Statement on Managing the LIBOR Transition (the “Joint Statement”).  The Joint Statement discusses the LIBOR replacement issues at a high level and “does not establish new guidance or regulation.”  The Joint Statement does not mandate SOFR or any other rate as the replacement for LIBOR.

What the Joint Statement does do is lay out supervisory expectations for an insured depository institution’s plans for the LIBOR transition.  These plans will be reviewed at the institution’s next safety and soundness examination – which may occur well before LIBOR is discontinued.

For many institutions, the critical supervisory issue is likely to be how an institution plans to implement the fallback language in existing contracts.  Fallback or replacement language is typically not uniform in these contracts and may not address the permanent cessation of LIBOR.  Further, according to the Joint Statement, LIBOR transition plans should include the identification of LIBOR-related exposures, efforts to include fallback language or use alternative reference rates in new contracts, operational preparedness, and consumer protection considerations.


Continue Reading FFIEC Releases Joint Statement on LIBOR Transition

On June 8, 2020, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (“FRBNY”) published revised FAQs and three updated transaction documents for the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility (“TALF”).  The three documents are the (i) Form of Issuer and Sponsor Certification as to TALF Eligibility for ABS, the Form of Indemnity Undertaking for ABS; (ii)

On May 20, 2020, the federal financial institution regulatory agencies—the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency—issued principles for responsibly offering small-dollar loans in order to meet consumers’ growing short-term credit needs.
Continue Reading Federal Agencies Share Principles for Offering Small-Dollar Loans

On May 13, 2020, the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) released two FAQs, numbers 46 and 47, regarding two safe harbors from an SBA inquiry into a borrower’s statutorily required certification of economic necessity for a loan under the Paycheck Protection Program  (“PPP”).  FAQ 46 states that the SBA will deem any borrower that, together with its affiliates, received PPP loans with an original principal amount of less than $2 million to have made the required certification in good faith.  FAQ 47 relates to an existing safe harbor for PPP loans repaid by a specific date; the FAQ extends the deadline from May 14, 2020, to Monday, May 18, 2020.  Accompanying the FAQs was an interim final rule that memorialized an earlier FAQ (number 43) that had set the repayment deadline of May 14.

The net effect of the FAQs is that a borrower that, with its affiliates, has PPP loans of more than $2 million must decide whether to repay the loan by May 18, or to undergo SBA’s review of the good-faith basis for the certification of economic necessity when the borrower’s loan forgiveness application is filed.  The SBA has outlined the nature of its review in only general terms.  Borrowers with PPP loans of $2 million or less are generally safe from such a review.


Continue Reading The PPP Economic Necessity Certification: SBA Provides Additional Guidance

On April 23, 2020, the Federal Reserve Board (“Board”) announced that it will provide “extensive” public information on the borrowers, interest rates, and loan amounts pertaining to the funding from the coronavirus emergency lending programs.
Continue Reading Federal Reserve to Disclose Information on Borrowers of Emergency Lending Programs

Yesterday, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System announced the creation of four new liquidity facilities and the expansion of three previously announced liquidity facilities to provide credit to borrowers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Whereas the previously announced programs primarily targeted certain financial markets and their participants (such as the markets for