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Corporate Credit Unions, Technical Corrections

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National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).


Final rule.


In 2010, NCUA issued technical corrections to its corporate credit union rule, published in the Federal Register of October 20, 2010. NCUA is issuing this final rule adopting the technical corrections without alteration.


This rule is effective March 23, 2011.

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Elizabeth Wirick, Staff Attorney, Office of General Counsel, National Credit Union Administration, 1775 Duke Street, Alexandria, Virginia 22314-3428, or telephone: (703) 518-6540.

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I. Background

In October 2010, NCUA published a comprehensive overhaul to its corporate credit union rule, 12 CFR part 704. 75 FR 64786 (Oct. 20, 2010). After publication, NCUA discovered that three technical corrections were necessary, and NCUA issued an interim final rule containing the corrections in December. 75 FR 47173 (Dec. 20, 2010). The technical corrections are as follows:

Section 704.2 Definition of “collateralized debt obligation”

The final revisions to part 704 prohibited corporate credit unions (corporates) from purchasing certain overly complex or leveraged investments, including collateralized debt obligations (CDOs). 75 FR 64786, 64793 (October 20, 2010). These prohibitions were intended to protect the corporates from the potential for excessive investment losses. 74 FR 65210, 65237 (December 9, 2009) Start Printed Page 16236(preamble to proposed part 704 revisions). The definition of CDO, however, was overly broad, in that it inadvertently included particular investments that did not—when subject to the other credit risk and asset liability management limitations of part 704—present the risk of excessive losses. This final rule amends the CDO definition to ensure the following are not prohibited: Commercial mortgage backed securities; securities collateralized by Agency mortgage-backed securities (Agency MBS); and securities that are fully guaranteed as to principal and interest by the United States Government and its agencies and government sponsored enterprises.

Paragraph 704.6(b) Exemptions to § 704.6

Section 704.6 generally requires corporate investments meet certain single obligor concentration limits, sector concentration limits, and credit rating requirements. Paragraph 704.6(b) exempts certain investments, including investments generally issued by or guaranteed by the U.S. Government or its agencies or sponsored enterprises, from the requirements of § 704.6. As stated in the preamble to the recent corporate rule revisions, however, the Board did not intend for this exemption to apply to agency MBS in the context of sector limits. 75 FR 64786, 64806 (Oct. 20, 2010) (discussing paragraph 704.6(d)(1)(i)). As drafted, however, not only the sector limits apply to agency MBS, but the other requirements, including single obligor limits and credit rating requirements, inadvertently apply to agency MBS. This correction clarifies the list of exemptions in § 704.6(b) to make clear that Agency MBS are subject to the sector concentration limits in 704.6(d) but not the other requirements of § 704.6.

Appendix A, Model Form H

The rule as published included an incorrect date instruction on Model Form H in Appendix A. Id. at 64851. Model Form H included introductory text indicating that the form was for use before October 20, 2011. In fact, because Model Form H deals with perpetual contributed capital, the form should be used only on and after October 20, 2011. The correction replaces the phrase “before” with the phrase “on or after.”

II. Interim Final Rule

NCUA issued an interim final rule with request for comment on November 24, 2010. As discussed in the preamble to the interim final rule, the Board issued the rule as an interim final rule because the changes were technical in nature and it was in the public interest to have these corrections become effective on the same date as the other revisions to the corporate rule. 75 FR 47173, 47174 (Oct. 20, 2010).

III. Summary of Comments

NCUA received two comments on the interim final rule, both from credit union trade associations. Neither commenter suggested changes to the rule text, but one of the commenters sought additional clarification regarding NCUA's treatment of commercial mortgage backed securities (CMBS) under the revised definition of CDO. The commenter requested that NCUA state its reasoning for the exclusion of CMBS from the definition of CDO and also state that if the structure of CMBS changes in a way that increases the corporates' risk of loss on these investments, NCUA will remove this exclusion.

This commenter appears to have misunderstood the effect of the change in the definition. The change operates to make CMBS a permissible investment for corporate credit unions—that is, securities collateralized by commercial mortgage loans. CDOs collateralized by mortgage securities, commercial or residential, remain prohibited under the definition of CDO. Investments in plain-vanilla CMBS, which are collateralized by loans, do not pose the same risk as investments in securities collateralized by other securities where an investor cannot as easily determine the quality of the underlying loans. Also, as the commenter correctly noted, corporate credit union investments in CMBS are subject to the sector concentration limits imposed under § 704.6(d). Finally, NCUA will continually monitor corporates' investments and make adjustments to the corporates' investment authorities where appropriate.

IV. Regulatory Procedures

Section D of the Supplementary Information to the November 2010 interim final rule sets forth the Board's analyses under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3506; 5 CFR part 1320 Appendix A.1), the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (Pub. L. 104-121), Executive Order 13132, and the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act (Pub. L. 105-277, 112 Stat. 2681 1998). See 75 FR 71527—71528. Because the final amendments are clarifications and do not alter the substance of the analyses and determinations accompanying that final rule, the Board continues to rely on those analyses and determinations for purposes of this rulemaking.

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List of Subjects in 12 CFR Part 704

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By the National Credit Union Administration Board on March 17, 2011.

Mary F. Rupp,

Secretary of the Board.

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Accordingly, the interim final rule amending 12 CFR Part 704, which was published at 75 FR 71526 on November 24, 2010, is adopted as a final rule without change.

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[FR Doc. 2011-6755 Filed 3-22-11; 8:45 am]