Morrison & Foerster LLP

On January 16, 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the New York Attorney General announced a settlement with a retailer for alleged violations of the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010 and the Truth in Lending Act, as well as New York State law arising out of the retailer’s sales practices for its store credit cards. As part of the settlements, the retailer is required to pay $10 million in civil money penalties to…
On January 3, 2019, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced a settlement with a federal savings bank for alleged violations of the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA) and Regulation E, as well as alleged violations of the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010 (CFPA). This is the first CFPB enforcement action under Director Kathy Kraninger. Read our client alert.…
The SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) published its 2019 examination priorities on December 20, 2018. Although OCIE’s published priorities “provide a preview of key areas where OCIE intends to focus its limited resources,” registrants should be aware that OCIE will proactively seek insight into evolving markets “including changes in risks to markets and investors,” and that its examination program will continue to be refined based on its evaluation of such risks. Registered investment advisers,…
The payments and money transmission regulatory landscape continues to evolve.  A key new development is that Michigan has affirmed by legislation that “agent of a payee” transactions meeting certain criteria are not subject to regulation under the state’s money transmission licensing law. However, the California Department of Business Oversight (the “DBO”), which regulates money transmission in California, continues to scrutinize the scope of what constitutes payee-agency activity exempt from money transmission licensing.  In light of…
On December 18, 2018, five federal agencies released a proposed rule (“Proposed Rule”) to conform the regulations implementing the Volcker Rule to statutory modifications provided by Sections 203 and 204 of the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act (the “Regulatory Relief Act”).  The Proposed Rule will not change the manner in which the Volcker Rule is currently administered, since the relevant provisions of the Regulatory Relief Act were effective upon enactment.  The agencies invite comment…
On December 13, 2018, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection published in the Federal Register a proposed policy, which would modify its 2016 Policy on No-Action Letters and create a new “Product Sandbox” policy in an effort to encourage banks and financial services providers to test new financial products. The alert discusses the Proposed Policy’s intention to fix several shortcomings of the 2016 Policy and encourage companies to test new financial products and services. Read…
On December 3, 2018, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, National Credit Union Administration, and Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (collectively, the “Agencies”) issued a joint statement regarding “innovative approaches” to Bank Secrecy Act/anti-money laundering compliance. This is the second joint statement issued this year by the Agencies addressing approaches to BSA/AML compliance. This alert discusses those statements along with the broader…
In between holiday shopping and merriment, we here at the Financial Services Report are pondering what’s in a name. Not much, said Shakespeare. Isaac Asimov begged to differ in a mystery story about who killed one of the library twins (we won’t give away the twist that hinges on a name). So do companies that spend millions of dollars identifying names to reflect their brands, and parents-to-be who spend countless hours poring over baby-naming books…
Until yesterday, the enforcement actions of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the digital token (aka cryptocurrency) space have primarily focused on the primary issuances of tokens. However, on November 8, 2018, the SEC announced in an order (the “Order”) that it had settled charges against Zachary Coburn, the founder of the digital token exchange EtherDelta, marking the first time that the SEC has brought an enforcement action against an online digital token platform…
On October 12, 2018, the staff of the SEC’s Division of Investment Management issued a no-action letter to the Independent Directors Council (“IDC”) agreeing that the staff will not recommend enforcement if, in lieu of making certain determinations under Rule 10f-3, 17a-7 and 17e-1 (the “Exemptive Rules”) under the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the “1940 Act”), a fund’s board instead receives from its Chief Compliance Officer (“CCO”) a written representation that transactions entered into reliance on…