Banking & Finance Law Report

Tag Archives: Dodd-Frank

Newly Effective HVCRE Loan Rules

Lenders who finance commercial real estate exposures should be aware of new regulations that impose harsher capital requirements on certain “high volatility commercial real estate,” or HVCRE, exposures. In June 2013, the FDIC, OCC, and Federal Reserve jointly approved proposed rules intended to implement new international banking standards, known as the Basel III Capital Accords, as well as establish new risk-based and leverage capital requirements for financial institutions, as required by Dodd-Frank. The rules have been in effect for all banks since January 1, 2015, having applied to the largest banks one year prior.

Under the rules, an HVCRE exposure is defined as “a credit facility that, prior to conversion to permanent financing, finances or has had financed the acquisition, development, or construction (“ADC”) of real property,” if it fails to satisfy any of the following three capital requirements:…

Regulatory Guidance on the Classification of Investment Securities Without Reliance on Credit Ratings

Recently, the primary federal bank regulators took the latest step in the long and winding road toward the replacement of credit ratings in the analysis of investment securities by insured financial institutions. You will recall this process began with the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act in July 2010 that, in the wake of the financial crisis in 2008, required government regulators of all types to deemphasize the role of credit ratings from the traditional credit rating firms.

The three primary federal bank regulators — the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation — in November issued regulatory guidance in the form of an agreement among themselves regarding the appropriate approach to the asset classification of investment securities for regulatory purposes. The guidance applies to national banks, state-chartered banks, and state- and federally-chartered savings associations, and supersedes previous guidance from 2004.…


In early July, the FDIC issued a report on an important subject to many community bankers: brokered deposits. The report to Congress, dated July 8, 2011, was required under Dodd-Frank and describes its view of the present role of brokered deposits in banking. Critical, of course, is the FDIC’s observation that bank failures are frequently linked to brokered deposits.

Despite industry concerns that the present regulatory system for brokered deposits is outdated and poorly designed, the report concludes the present statutory scheme should not be amended or repealed.

Here is how the FDIC summarized the industry concerns it heard through the public comment process: (i) the brokered deposit statute creates liquidity problems if a bank becomes less than well capitalized; (ii) a combination of the statute and supervisory practices stigmatizes brokered deposits; and (iii) the brokered deposit statute is outdated and has not kept pace with technological change and innovation.…

SEC Whistleblower Rules

In mid-August the SEC’s new whistleblower rules will take effect (click here for the Final Rule).  The new rules explain and further define the requirements of a whistleblower program that has been in place since the Dodd-Frank Act took effect on July 21, 2010. In general, anyone who provides information to the SEC relating to a possible violation of the securities laws is entitled to an award if the following requirements are met:

  • The information must be provided voluntarily, before the SEC asks for it;
  • The information must be based on the whistleblower’s independent knowledge and not already known to the SEC or derived from public filings;
  • Providing the information must lead to successful enforcement by the SEC or a federal court or administrative action; and
  • The SEC must obtain monetary sanctions above $1 million.

Successful whistleblowers can receive an award of between 10 and 30% of the total monetary sanctions collected. The whistleblower program is a significant expansion of previous SEC whistleblower rules that only applied to insider-trading cases and were capped at 10% of the penalties collected (click here for the SEC press release). 

The whistleblower rules do not require the whistleblower to comply with the …

Whistleblowing Galore Under the Dodd-Frank Act

Congress’ recent passage and President Obama’s signing of the “Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act” provides significant incentives for financial industry whistleblowers to assist the government root out fraudulent practices and other unlawful conduct in the industry. Supporters of the Dodd-Frank Act are praising its expansive whistleblower protections as a necessary good corporate-citizen tool to help the government ensure a financial crisis like 2008 never happens again.

Under the Dodd-Frank Act, whistleblowers in publicly traded companies are provided significant personal financial incentives to disclose to the SEC “original” information concerning securities laws violations occurring within their companies. “Original” information means the information must be derived from the whistleblower’s independent knowledge or analysis and cannot be known to the SEC from any other source. The available financial reward — or “bounty” — available to a qualifying whistleblower will range from 10% to 30% of any financial recovery in excess of $1,000,000 that the SEC obtains from the targeted corporation, including the amount of any penalties, disgorgement and interest.…