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MoFo Reenforcement

The Enforcement Blog

Uncertain Seas: European Financial and Regulatory Developments into 2017

Posted in Regulatory Developments

“There are greater storms in politics than you will ever find at sea. Piracy, broadsides, blood on the decks. You will find them all in politics.”  —David Lloyd George, British Prime Minister, 1916-1922

“The greater the difficulty the more glory in surmounting it. Skillful pilots gain their reputation from storms and tempests” —Epictetus

Lloyd George and Epictetus may be long gone but their words have much resonance with the events of 2016. The political fallout from the UK’s vote to leave the European Union (“EU”) was immediate and brutal and Lloyd George’s words above could have been written for the events in the UK in the aftermath of the vote. Prime Minister David Cameron resigned immediately and Theresa May became the new UK Prime Minister after a short and dramatic Conservative Party leadership election contest.  The new UK government has had to plot a course for the UK to negotiate its exit from the EU, regarded by many commentators as likely to be one of the most complex political and trade negotiations ever attempted. And this in a continuing febrile political environment with many Brexit supporters suspicious that the UK government will strike a deal with the EU that will neuter the effect of Brexit, many businesses and financial institutions concerned that a “hard” Brexit could result in a swift loss of access to the EU single market and many EU politicians keen that a hard line should be taken against the UK in negotiations to deter other member states from leaving.

As if that wasn’t enough, the election in November of Donald Trump to the Presidency of the United States shocked not only the political establishment in the US but almost the entire world. Again, despite some initial jitters, financial markets have remained relatively stable in the aftermath of his election but considerable uncertainty surrounds the direction of the new administration with President-elect Trump having made inconsistent statements on the stump, at times espousing protectionist views on trade whilst calling for less financial regulation and greater fiscal stimulus. We should have more clarity on some of these issues in the coming months.

Despite the uncertainty caused by the events of 2016, we expect the implementation of the new post-financial global regulatory framework to continue. However, the direction of travel is perhaps now more uncertain than it has been for a while. In the article in the following link, we highlight the principal areas of financial regulation and other important events impacting on financial regulation in the EU that have impacted markets over the recent past, as well as how we see these areas developing in 2017 and beyond.

To access a copy, click here.

NYDFS Significantly Revises Cybersecurity Proposal, Burdens Remain

Posted in Privacy, Regulatory Developments

On December 28, 2016, the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) released a significantly revised version of its controversial, proposed cybersecurity rules, initially proposed in September of last year. As we noted in our Client Alert at that time, the rules as originally proposed would have created one of the most comprehensive and detailed cybersecurity standards in the country, and would have created significant compliance and implementation challenges. As a result, the original proposal generated significant industry outcry, calling into question, among other things, the original proposal’s workability. Like the original proposal, the revised proposal would apply to any person “operating under or required to operate under a license, registration, charter, certificate, permit, accreditation or similar authorization under” New York banking, insurance and financial services law, including, for example, commercial banks, foreign banks with New York State-licensed offices, mortgage brokers and servicers, small-loan lenders, and money transmitters doing business in New York. The comment period regarding the revised proposal closes on January 27, 2017.

Read our client alert.

EVENT: 7th Annual Financial Services, Regulatory and Compliance Conference

Posted in Events

Wednesday, March 8, 2017
8:45 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. EST

The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte
201 East Trade Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

Please join Morrison & Foerster attorneys as we offer our insights regarding the future of financial services regulation. The morning sessions will focus on consumer financial services and privacy and cybersecurity developments. The afternoon sessions will focus on wholesale, capital markets and tax developments.

For more information and to register, please click here.

EVENT: Fed’s Final TLAC Rule

Posted in Events

Monday, December 19, 2016
4:15 p.m. – 4:45 p.m. EST

On December 15, 2016, the Federal Reserve Board will hold an open meeting to consider and approval the final rules relating to a long-term debt, total loss absorbing capacity (TLAC), and clean holding company requirement.  The long-awaited final rules will have important effects for U.S. G-SIBs and for foreign banks that are G-SIBs and subject to an intermediate holding company requirement.  Join us for an overview and our preliminary analysis.

We will provide an overview of:

  • The Fed’s final rules;
  • Principal differences between the proposed rules and the final rules;
  • Considerations for foreign banks subject to the rules;
  • An assessment of the U.S. internal TLAC requirement compared to the IHC requirement proposed by the European Commission; and
  • The anticipated effect of the Fed’s final rules on various financial products.


This will be an operator-assisted call; all lines will be muted, but we will provide for a Q&A.

Click here to register.

Financial Services Report – Winter 2016

Posted in Arbitration, Auto Lending, CFPB, Credit Cards, Disparate Impact, Electronic Payments, Enforcement Actions, Fair Lending, Foreclosure, Military Issues, Mobile Payments, Mortgage, Payday Lending, Preemption, Privacy, Regulatory Developments, State Regulators, UDAAP

Hope you survived all of those awkward Thanksgiving holiday conversations—amazing how divided people are on whether the court got it right in the PHH case, isn’t it? So on we go into the holiday season, while visions of Dodd-Frank repeal dance in our heads. No long winter’s nap for the CFPB, not with the inauguration fast approaching. Will we see a final arbitration rule in our stockings? Will the New Year bring efforts to reinstate Glass-Steagall? How about the promised temporary moratorium on new agency regulations?

No crystal ball, but read on to learn the latest in privacy, mortgage, arbitration, etc., etc. The PHH ruling, the Financial Choice Act, the OCC’s take on regulating FinTech, the latest on privacy, preemption, arbitration, and mortgage—it’s all here as our present to you.

Until next time, have a wonderful holiday and a Happy New Year, from all of us to all of you.

Read our newsletter.

EVENT: FinTech Companies and the OCC Special Purpose National Bank Charter

Posted in Events, Regulatory Developments

Thursday, December 8, 2016
11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. PST
2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. EST

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) announced in a White Paper that it would begin considering applications from FinTech companies to become “special purpose national banks.” The White Paper includes information about the OCC’s supervisory expectations for these new special purpose national banks and the chartering process.

Morrison & Foerster will be hosting a teleconference to discuss the new special purpose national bank charter, including implications for FinTech companies and potential challenges to obtaining a special purpose national bank charter.

This will be an operator-assisted call of approximately 45 minutes in duration and will be followed by a brief Q&A opportunity. We also invite you to submit questions before the start of the call by emailing cbaker@mofo.com.

Oliver Ireland Partner, Morrison & Foerster
Sean Ruff Of Counsel, Morrison & Foerster
Crystal Kaldjob Associate, Morrison & Foerster

Click here to register.

Ten Questions and Nine Answers about PHH and the Future of the CFPB Director

Posted in CFPB, Mortgage

The potentially explosive combination of the D.C. Circuit’s October decision in PHH v. CFPB and the outcome of the presidential election has spurred a host of questions about how the PHH litigation may proceed and about the future of the CFPB under the leadership of CFPB Director Richard Cordray.  After providing some background, this alert will discuss some of the most pressing of those questions.

Read our client alert.

OCC Announces Special Purpose National Bank Charter for FinTech Companies

Posted in Regulatory Developments

On December 2, 2016, Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry confirmed that the agency will begin considering applications from FinTech companies to become special purpose national banks, saying that the OCC will charter “financial technology companies that offer bank products and services and meet our high standards and chartering requirements.” The OCC simultaneously released a white paper on issues addressing the conditions on extending national bank charters to FinTech companies.

Read our client alert.

CFPB Requests Information Regarding Data Aggregation Services

Posted in CFPB, Privacy

On November 17, 2016, the CFPB held a field hearing in Salt Lake City, Utah, and published a Request for Information (“RFI”) regarding access to consumer financial account data. Through the RFI, the CFPB is seeking information regarding consumers’ ability to access, control and share personal financial data relating to them in a usable electronic form. Such access includes access by a third party authorized by the consumer in connection with a product or service offered by the third party (i.e., “data aggregators”).

Read our client alert.

Whither the CFPB? In Uncertain Times, Rep. Hensarling’s Vision May See New Life

Posted in Regulatory Developments

Given the outcome of the presidential election, the focus is now on President-Elect Trump’s campaign promises to scale back the Dodd-Frank Act and pursue deregulation of financial services. As of now, little is known about specific actions the new administration will pursue after inauguration. There is, however, a template for reform, namely, the Financial Creating Hope and Opportunity for Investors, Consumers and Entrepreneurs Act, H.R. 5983, a substitute version of which was approved by the House Financial Services Committee on September 13, 2016. This bill, if enacted by Congress, would impose sweeping reform on the regulation of financial services in the United States. Of particular interest are the provisions covering retail financial services and the powerful, controversial regulator of these markets, the CFPB.

Read our client alert.