Weekly Topic Update (Jan 28 to Feb 3)

Financial industry on brink of transformation with bank-backed blockchain projects

01/29/2018

As the popularity of cryptocurrencies grows, the financial industry’s showing an increased interest in bank-backed blockchain projects. Some of the largest projects currently underway include IBM-backed Hyperledger Fabric project, the Utility Settlement Coin and R3’s blockchain consortium. The technology holds the potential to reduce and possibly eliminate settlement times by ensuring timely and secure processing of operations. Other uses include increased global currency exchange rate speeds and greater transaction security, among other benefits, eventually replacing traditional back-office clearinghouses and other outdated mediums that exist between asset sellers and buyers.

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Source: TechCrunch

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Trending News

01/24/2018

Tax overhaul increasing commercial loan demand at regional banks

Washington Post • Lending • Commercial Lending • Industry News

U.S. regional bank executives say the tax break has spurred a pick-up in commercial loan demand, particularly in small- and medium-sized businesses, as well as a rise in consumer spending on credit and debit cards. In turn, the uptick prompted many lenders to raise their loan growth and profit outlooks for the coming year. Regional banks posted record investment-banking revenues in 2017 as more corporate clients paid down loans and turned to the capital markets for borrowing needs.

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01/24/2018

Removal of high overdraft penalties marking end of big banks’ free checking accounts

The Atlantic • Deposits • Industry News

Bank of America finished converting an unspecified number of customers still using its free checking account to a different kind of checking account that will charge a monthly fee of $12. This follows Wells Fargo and U.S. Bank’s moves to discontinue no-fee or effectively free checking accounts. Though consumers are criticizing the banks’ decisions, the trend is due to the shift away from harsh overdraft penalties which in themselves generated fees as revenue stream.

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01/25/2018

Murky regulatory language may complicate BSA rule enforcement

MoneyLaundering.com • AML BSA CTF • Industry News

Bank examiners may have wide discretion in deciding how they will enforce U.S. customer due-diligence (CDD) requirements due to language used in the federal regulations, set to take effect in May. FinCEN’s long-anticipated CDD rule will require banks to take reasonable steps to identify individuals owning at least 25% of any legal entity for whom they hold accounts, and one person who exercises significant control over the firm in question. From now on, examiners cite violations of the CDD rule as infractions of the internal-controls requirement or one of the other original three pillars – broader metrics that may dilute their significance and potentially reduce the chance of enforcement action.

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