DOJ Seeking Public Comments on Bank Merger Guidelines

As part of the Biden administration’s broader competition initiative, the Department of Justice today announced it is seeking public feedback on potential revisions to its 1995 bank merger competitive review guidelines. The DOJ noted that with this request for comments, it is focusing on “whether bank merger review is currently sufficient to prevent harmful mergers and whether it accounts for the full range of competitive factors appropriate under the laws.”

Specifically, the DOJ is seeking input on the extent to which its competitive scrutiny of bank mergers should apply standards and incorporate factors beyond those applicable to other industries, as well as feedback on what factors should be considered, how should they be incorporated into the review process and any additional remedies the DOJ should consider obtaining.

This request builds on a 2020 request for feedback, through which DOJ sought information on the inclusion of non-traditional banks and nonbanks in its merger guidelines, among other things.