Compliance Guide

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Regulators Urge Banks to Self-Assess Diversity Policies and Practices

August 3 – Federal banking agencies have provided information on how the financial institutions they regulate may begin to submit self-assessments of their diversity policies and practices as of year-end 2015, and issued Frequently Asked Questions about the process.

Financial institutions are strongly encouraged to disclose on their websites their diversity policies and practices, as well as information related to their self-assessments, to maximize transparency, and to provide their policies, practices and self-assessment information to their primary federal financial regulator. Additional information, with detailed submission instructions, will be provided at a later date directly to the institutions.

Section 342 of the Dodd-Frank Act required the federal financial regulatory agencies to establish an Office of Minority and Women Inclusion and instructed the OMWI director at each agency to develop standards for assessing the diversity policies and practices of its regulated institutions.

The standards, which became effective on June 10, 2015, reflect input received during a public comment period, as well as information gathered during outreach sessions. The standards provide a framework for regulated institutions to assess and establish or strengthen their diversity policies and practices.

The standards are intended to promote transparency and awareness of diversity policies and practices within the institutions. On July 13, 2016, the agencies announced that the Office of Management and Budget had approved the collection of the voluntary self-assessment information. The information may be used by the agencies to monitor diversity and inclusion trends and identify leading policies and practices in the financial services industry.

A list of Frequently Asked Questions and Answers is available on the websites of the Federal Reserve Board, the FDIC and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

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