BankNews Jan. 2015

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Survey: Investments in Technology, Facilities and Hiring Part of 2014 Plans

May 8 – Middle market and large corporate finance executives are markedly optimistic about the economy and many are planning increased capital spending, according to TD Bank’s fourth Annual CFO Survey.

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OCC Newsletter Focuses on Public Welfare Investments in Wind Energy Projects

Nov 4 – The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has published an online newsletter that provides information showing how national banks and federal savings associations can use public welfare investment authority to invest in wind energy projects.

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Ag Secretary Announces Investments to Promote Business Development, Create Jobs in 11 States

May 22 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced that loans and grant funds will be provided to applicants in 11 states to support businesses, improve the quality of medical care and create or save hundreds of jobs. Funding is provided through USDA’s Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant program. The United States Department of Agriculture remains focused on carrying out its mission, despite a time of significant budget uncertainty. The announcement is one part of the department’s efforts to strengthen the rural economy.

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FDIC Sends Letter on Investments in Corporate Debt Securities by Savings Associations

July 25 – The FDIC has issued a final rule that would prohibit state and federal savings associations from acquiring or holding a corporate debt security when the security’s issuer does not have an adequate capacity to meet all financial commitments under the security for the projected life of the security. The final rule is being issued under section 939(a) of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Savings associations must be in compliance with this rule by Jan. 1, 2013. Additionally, the FDIC has issued final guidance that sets forth due diligence standards for determining the credit quality of a corporate debt security.

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OCC Newsletter Focuses on National Bank Investments in Solar Energy

July 7 – The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has published an online newsletter that provides a guide for national banks seeking to invest in solar energy projects under the national bank public welfare investment authority.

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ABA Names SVP of Center for Securities, Trust and Investments, Executive Director of ABASA

Dec 1 – The American Bankers Association has named Cecelia A. Calaby as senior vice president of the Center for Securities, Trust and Investments as well as executive director of the ABA Securities Association.

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OCC Newsletter Focuses on National Bank Community Development Investments

Sept 29 – The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has published the fall edition of Community Developments Investments, its on-line newsletter that provides a guide for national banks seeking a wide range of community and economic development investments under the public welfare investment authority. Under this authority, national banks may make investments that otherwise are not expressly permitted under the National Bank Act.

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Liquidity-Risk Management: A Focus on Investments

Anyone involved with community banking in recent years has witnessed distinct changes in the way depository institutions fund their asset growth. In particular, there has been a steady increase in alternative sources of wholesale funding available to bank managers. As core deposits dropped relative to total assets, bankers recognized that managing liquidity was not as easy as it once was, and therefore increased reliance on brokered CDs, FHLB advances and other wholesale sources to fund the extension of credit.

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Risk Management of Investments in Structured Credit Products

May 1 – A number of insured banks with portfolio holdings in private label mortgage-backed securities, collateralized debt obligations, or asset-backed securities are facing heightened losses as a result of significant investments in these products. Certain structured credit products, particularly private label mortgage-backed securities and CDOs, have experienced deteriorating collateral performance, price declines, and credit rating downgrades. Management due diligence regarding purchases of these products was often lacking. This Financial Institution Letter reiterates and clarifies existing supervisory guidance on the purchase and holding of complex structured credit products. It focuses on the various supervisory concerns related to these securities: pre-purchase analysis, suitability determination, risk limits, credit ratings, valuation, ongoing due diligence, adverse classification, and capital treatment.

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Treasury announces TARP investments in Chrysler Financial

Jan 16 – The Treasury Department has announced that it will make a $1.5 billion loan to a special purpose entity created by Chrysler Financial to finance the extension of new consumer auto loans as part of a broader program to assist the domestic automotive industry in becoming financially viable.

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