OCC Examining Possibility of Limited-Purpose Fintech Charter

Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry said today that the OCC is examining its legal authority to offer a limited-purpose charter for fintech firms, similar to those granted to trust companies without deposit insurance and to credit card banks. According to a report from American Banker, Curry said that the OCC “probably” has the authority to offer a charter to a non-deposit-taking entity, but added that the fintech industry must carefully consider whether or not such a charter would be suitable to the business model of a fintech firm.

Regulators have been receiving increased calls from major fintech players to create a national charter that would provide a regulatory “umbrella” of federal preemption of state rules. However, Curry commented previously that such a charter would require fintech companies to be subject to more stringent regulatory requirements. “I would be very concerned, for example, if we were to authorize a federal license that offers the benefits of the national bank charter, including preemption, without any of the safeguards or responsibilities that apply to banks and thrifts,” Curry said.


About Author

Monica C. Meinert is a senior editor at the ABA Banking Journal and VP for editorial strategy at the American Bankers Association, where she oversees ABA Daily Newsbytes.