The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) published an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking on Thursday, saying that it is reviewing its regulations around digital bank activities to ensure that these regulations “continue to evolve with developments in the industry.” The notice was signed by Acting Comptroller of the Currency Brian Brooks, the former chief legal officer of Coinbase, who took office at OCC this month.
“Banks must be able to meet the needs of the consumers that rely on them.”
The US bank regulator published two notices on Thursday, a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, which cover a range of topics related to its remit as a regulator of US banks. The second notice published by the OCC focuses on digital activities and hones in on the topic of crypto. In a statement alongside notices, the bank regulator said that it is part of the agency’s effort to support the evolution of the federal banking system and its ability to meet the needs of the consumers, businesses, and communities it serves.
The notice poses several questions on how to regulate digital banking activities.
The OCC also said that “comments received on this ANPR may inform the development of specific policy proposals or future rulemakings.” The published notice poses several questions, including, what types of activities related to cryptocurrencies or crypto assets are financial services companies or bank customers engaged? To what extent does customer engagement in crypto-related activities impact banks and the banking industry? The US bank regulator is seeking public input on such questions to frame the regulations around digital currency activities in the country. Other areas of inquiry by the OCC focus on AI, next-generation payment systems, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Several countries around the world are now implementing crypto regulations based on the Financial Action Task Force guidelines proposed last year.