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Top Story Compliance Related

11/13/2019

Tech company to implement data security program

InfoTrax Xystems, L.C., a Utah-based technology company, has agreed to implement a comprehensive data security program to settle Federal Trade Commission allegations that the company failed to put in place reasonable security safeguards. A complaint filed by the FTC alleged that the failure to put in place reasonable, low-cost, and readily available security protections to safeguard the personal information it maintained on behalf of its clients allowed a hacker to access the personal information of a million consumers.

11/13/2019

FDIC Board agenda released

The FDIC Board's agenda for its 10:00 a.m. EST, November 19, 2019, meeting has been released. The summary agenda includes memoranda and resolutions regarding:

  • Regulatory Capital Rule: Revisions to the Supplementary Leverage Ratio to Exclude Certain Central Bank Deposits of Banking Organizations Predominantly Engaged in Custody, Safekeeping and Asset Servicing Activities.
  • Regulatory Capital Treatment for High Volatility Commercial Real Estate (“HVCRE”) Exposures.
  • Final Rule Removing Transferred OTS Regulation, Part 390 Subpart M – Deposits.
  • Notice of Final Rulemaking Re: The Use and Remittance of Certain Assessment Credits.
  • Establishment of the FDIC Advisory Committee of State Regulators.

The Board's discussion agenda includes memoranda and resolutions regarding:

  • Regulatory Capital Rule: Standardized Approach for Calculating the Exposure Amount of Derivative Contracts.
  • Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Conversion of the Statement of Policy for Section 19 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act to a Regulation.
  • Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Federal Interest Rate Authority.

11/12/2019

FinCEN GTOs reissued

FinCEN has announced the renewal of its Geographic Targeting Orders (GTOs) that require U.S. title insurance companies to identify the natural persons behind shell companies used in all-cash purchases of residential real estate. The renewed GTOs will be identical to the May 2019 GTOs with one modification: the new GTOs will not require reporting for purchases made by legal entities that are U.S. publicly-traded companies. Real estate purchases by such entities are identifiable through other business filings.

The terms of this Order are effective beginning November 12, 2019 and ending on May 9, 2020. It applies to purchases made without a bank loan or other similar form of external financing and paid for, at least in part, using currency or a cashier's, certified, traveler's, personal or business check, a money order in any form, a funds transfer, or virtual currency. Covered transactions are those involving residential real property in the:

  • Texas counties of Bexar, Tarrant, or Dallas;
  • Florida counties of Miami-Dade, Broward, or Palm Beach;
  • Boroughs of Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, Staten Island, or Manhattan in New York City, New York;
  • California counties of San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Mateo, or Santa Clara;
  • City and County of Honolulu in Hawaii;
  • Nevada county of Clark;
  • Washington county of King;
  • Massachusetts counties of Suffolk, or Middlesex; or
  • Illinois county of Cook

11/12/2019

Proposal to amend swap margin rule

The OCC, Fed, FDIC, the Farm Credit Administration, and the Federal Housing Finance Agency are seeking comment on a proposed rule [84 FR 59970] that would amend their regulations regarding the minimum margin and capital requirements for registered swap dealers, major swap participants, security-based swap dealers, and major security-based swap participants (Swap Margin Rule). Comments on the proposal are due by December 9, 2019.

11/12/2019

Board requests comments on delay of credit limit rule

The Federal Reserve Board is inviting public comment on a proposal to extend by 18 months the initial compliance dates for foreign banks subject to its single-counterparty credit limit rule. The extension would provide additional time for foreign jurisdictions' versions of the rule to become effective and would apply only to the combined U.S. operations of the foreign banks and not to any U.S. intermediate holding companies of those banks.

Under the proposal, the largest foreign banks need to comply by July 1, 2021, while smaller foreign banks would need to comply by January 1, 2022. Comments will be accepted for 30 days following Federal Register publication.

11/12/2019

OFAC updates Nicaragua-related designation

OFAC has issued an update of an SDN Listing for Roberto Jose Lopez Gomez, a Nicaraguan national. For details, see BankersOnline's OFAC Update.

11/08/2019

Nicaraguan officials designated

The Treasury Department has reported that OFAC has designated three Nicaraguan government officials, Ramon Antonio Avellan Medal, Lumberto Ignacio Campbell Hooker, and Roberto Jose Lopez Gomez, who have had a role in directing entities engaged in human rights abuses, election fraud, and corruption in that country. Amadou Kouffa from Mali linked to JAMA'AT NUSRAT AL-ISLAM WAL-MUSLIMIN was also designated as a global terrorist. For identifying information on these four individuals, see BankersOnline's OFAC Update.

11/07/2019

Retirement plan contribution limits increase

The Internal Revenue Service has announced that the contribution limit for employees who participate in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government's Thrift Savings Plan is increased from $19,000 to $19,500. The catch-up contribution limit for employees aged 50 and over who participate in these plans is increased from $6,000 to $6,500.The limitation regarding SIMPLE retirement accounts for 2020 is increased to $13,500, up from $13,000 for 2019. The income ranges for determining eligibility to make deductible contributions to traditional Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs), to contribute to Roth IRAs and to claim the Saver's Credit all increased for 2020. Taxpayers can deduct contributions to a traditional IRA if they meet certain conditions. If during the year either the taxpayer or his or her spouse was covered by a retirement plan at work, the deduction may be reduced, or phased out, until it is eliminated, depending on filing status and income. (If neither the taxpayer nor his or her spouse is covered by a retirement plan at work, the phase-outs of the deduction do not apply.)

11/07/2019

IRS tax year 2020 annual inflation adjustments

The IRS has announced the tax year 2020 annual inflation adjustments for more than 60 tax provisions, including the tax rate schedules and other tax changes

11/07/2019

HomeStreet Bank pays $1.35 million for RESPA violations

The FDIC has announced a settlement with HomeStreet Bank, Seattle, Washington, for violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA). HomeStreet stipulated to the issuance of a civil money penalty order to pay $1,350,000.

The FDIC determined that HomeStreet Bank entered into co-marketing arrangements in which the bank and real estate brokers agreed to market their services together using online platforms. The FDIC also determined that the bank entered into desk rental agreements under which the bank rented space in the offices of real estate brokers and home builders. These arrangements and agreements resulted in the payment of fees by the bank to real estate brokers and home builders for their referrals of mortgage loan business, in violation of RESPA.

While co-marketing arrangements and desk rental agreements are permissible where the fees paid bear a reasonable relationship to the fair market value of marketing or rental costs, such arrangements and agreements violate RESPA when the amounts paid exceed fair market value and the excess is for referrals of mortgage business.

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