May 6, 2022

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s (FDIC) Board of Directors – FDIC Acting Chair Martin Gruenberg, OCC Acting Comptroller Michael Hsu, and CFPB Director Rohit Chopra – met in open session and issued an interagency proposed rule on the Community Reinvestment Act. Read the press release here, as well as statements from CFPB Director Rohit ChopraOCC Acting Comptroller Michael Hsu, and Acting FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg. Comments on the proposal will be accepted on or before August 5, 2022.

California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order to begin the process of creating a regulatory approach to spur responsible innovation while protecting California consumers, assess how to deploy blockchain technology for state and public institutions, and build research and workforce development pathways to prepare Californians for success in this industry.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released its Supervisory Highlights report on legal violations identified during the CFPB’s supervisory examinations in the second half of 2021. The report details key findings across consumer financial products and services. 

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced the allocation of 20 additional positions to the unit responsible for protecting investors in crypto markets and from cyber-related threats. The newly renamed Crypto Assets and Cyber Unit (formerly known as the Cyber Unit) in the Division of Enforcement will grow to 50 dedicated positions.

A survey conducted by the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) found that nine out of ten central banks around the world are exploring central bank digital currencies (CBDC). The survey also found that more central banks are developing or testing a retail CBDC or a digital currency designed to be used by consumers than a wholesale CBDC, which is meant to be used by banks.

The U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned, a North Korea-linked crypto mixing service that obfuscates the origin and destination of bitcoin transactions on Friday, and added bitcoin and ether addresses to its blacklist.

The New York Senate Environmental Conservation Committee has decided not to consider a bill that aims to place a two-year moratorium on certain types of proof-of-work crypto mining operations in New York according to a schedule released by the Committee.

Sen. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) said during an Axios virtual event that she is confident her bipartisan cryptocurrency legislation with Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) will allow members of Congress to find “common ground” and a better understanding of digital assets. 

Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-NC), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Financial Services, and Bill Huizenga (R-MI), Ranking Member of the Financial Services Subcommittee on Investor Protection, Entrepreneurship, and Capital Markets, sent a letter to Chair Maxine Waters (D-CA) reiterating their demand for a hearing with all SEC Commissioners. Committee Republicans previously called on Chair Waters to schedule a hearing with the full Commission no later than April 2022 to discuss the SEC’s rulemaking agenda and hear the views of each Commissioner. 

The Senate confirmed the nomination of Lael Brainard to a four-year term as Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve. 

Congressman McHenry (R-NC) said Congress should set up a new system of digital asset regulation outside the SEC and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the two U.S. financial market regulators, which he said were ill-equipped for the task. “I fundamentally think the Securities and Exchange Commission and the CFTC lack that capacity to well regulate this new innovation,” he said at an event hosted by Punchbowl News.

The CFPB announced that it is invoking a largely unused legal provision to examine nonbank financial companies that pose risks to consumers. The CFPB believes that utilizing this dormant authority will help protect consumers and level the playing field between banks and nonbanks. The CFPB is also seeking public comments on a procedural rule to make this process more transparent. For more information, see our memo

Wednesday, May 11 at 10:00 AM ET: The House Financial Services Subcommittee on Investor Protection, Entrepreneurship and Capital Markets will convene for a hybrid hearing entitled, “A Notch Above? Examining the Bond Rating Industry.” 

Thursday, May 12 at 10:00 AM ET: The House Financial Services Committee will convene for a hybrid hearing entitled, “The Annual Report of the Financial Stability Oversight Council.” 

Friday, May 13 at 9:00 AM ET:
The House Financial Services Committee Task Force on Artificial Intelligence will convene for a hybrid hearing entitled, “Keeping Up with the Codes – Using AI for Effective RegTech.” 

Tuesday, May 17 at 10:00 AM ET (and subsequent days if necessary): The House Financial Services Committee will convene for a hybrid markup. 

Wednesday, May 25 from 9:30 AM to 4:00 PM ET: Staff of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission will hold a public roundtable to discuss issues related to intermediation in derivatives trading and clearing.