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2002 Annual Report
|Operations of the
Corporation – The Year in Review
Supervision and consumer protection are the cornerstones of the FDIC’s efforts to ensure the stability of and public confidence in the nation’s financial system. As of year-end, the Corporation supervised 5,348 FDIC-insured state-chartered commercial banks that are not members of the Federal Reserve System (referred to as “state nonmember banks”). Through safety and soundness and consumer compliance examinations of these FDIC-supervised institutions, the FDIC assesses their management practices and policies as well as their compliance with applicable laws and regulations. The FDIC also educates bankers and consumers on matters of interest to bank customers, and addresses consumers’ questions and concerns.
Safety and Soundness
A total of 1,806 examinations were conducted in 2002 by state authorities under the alternating examination program, and an additional 78 examinations were conducted with FDIC’s assistance. Thirty-six institutions were due for an examination by state authorities, and five institutions had mergers pending at year-end. The remaining 31 institutions have examinations scheduled during the first and second quarters of 2003.
The number of FDIC-supervised institutions identified as “problem” institutions with a composite “4” or “5” CAMELS rating increased from 67 at year-end 2001 to 84 at year-end 2002. During 2002, 48 institutions were removed from problem status due to composite rating upgrades, mergers, consolidations, or sales, and 63 institutions were added to the problem bank list. The FDIC is required to conduct follow-up examinations of all designated problem institutions within 12 months of their last examination. As of December 31, 2002, all follow-up examinations for problem institutions had been performed on schedule.
for Financially Sound Institutions
Specifically, in May 2002, the FDIC implemented a new program to streamline safety and soundness examinations of certain financially sound banks. The program, known as "MERIT" for "maximum efficiency, risk-focused, institution-targeted examinations" streamlines examinations for FDIC-supervised institutions with a supervisory rating of "1" or "2," that have $250 million or less in total assets and that are well-managed, and meet other program criteria while maintaining the quality and integrity of the examination. By year-end, the program had achieved more than a 20 percent reduction in examination hours for all eligible "1" and "2" rated FDIC-supervised institutions with under $250 million in assets.
Reducing Regulatory Burden
Minority Depository Institutions
Compliance Examination Program
Compliance examinations are conducted on an established schedule by specially trained personnel. The interval between compliance examinations is typically two to three years for banks with strong compliance records. Banks with weak compliance performance are typically examined on an annual or shorter cycle. The FDIC uses the full extent of its enforcement authority, as appropriate, to address instances of noncompliance. Further, the FDIC meets its statutory responsibilities under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act to refer patterns or practices of credit discrimination to the Department of Justice. The FDIC conducted 1,820 compliance and CRA examinations in 2002, compared to 2,180 in 2001. Ten FDIC-supervised institutions due for an examination in 2002 were deferred, nine due to mergers or charter changes, and one to allow coordination with a scheduled safety and soundness examination. Nine institutions were assigned a composite "4" rating for compliance as of year-end 2002. None were assigned a composite "5" rating. Eight of the nine "4" rated institutions have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the FDIC to correct compliance issues, and the ninth is currently reviewing a draft MOU, which is expected to be finalized in early 2003. (For more details, see the FDIC Examinations table.)
Over 1,000 representatives of community organizations, government agencies and financial institutions have attended orientation sessions on Money Smart held across the country. The Money Smart program also includes multi-partner agreements in which low and moderate-income adults can receive a variety of government services, and those outside of the financial mainstream are provided financial education with Money Smart as the principal curriculum.
As of year-end 2002, the FDIC had entered into partnership agreements with the Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, U.S. Department of Labor, U.S. Small Business Administration, Association of Military Banks of America, Independent Community Bankers of America, Internal Revenue Service, Office of the White House Initiative on Asian American Pacific Islanders, and over 300 other national and regional organizations. A Spanish version of the Money Smart curriculum was rolled out in mid-2002, and a Chinese version will be available in early 2003. The FDIC is pleased with the positive feedback from the Money Smart curriculum and will continue to improve and expand this important program.
In addition, the FDIC received over 7,000 written inquiries and 8,000 telephone inquiries from consumers and bankers about FDIC insurance and consumer protection issues.
The largest percentage of inquiries related to whether specific financial institutions were insured by the FDIC and deposit insurance coverage. Other common inquiries were requests for copies of FDIC consumer publications, questions about banking practices and consumer rights under federal consumer protection laws, and how to obtain a personal credit report.
The FDIC has established a Central Call Center (1-877-275-3342) as its primary telephone point of contact for questions on deposit insurance from the banking community and the public.
To reach out to consumers needing assistance on matters arising from failed financial institutions, the FDIC also operates a Customer Service Center with staff dedicated primarily to handling records research and collateral releases. The records research staff responded to over 4,000 inquiries in 2002. This group researches the historical records of failed financial institutions to answer customer questions about deposit accounts, loan transaction histories, tax suits for delinquent real estate taxes and other issues. The collateral release staff researches and determines ownership of collateral securing loans from failed financial institutions in order to provide a release of lien, assignment or reconveyance to the borrower. This staff completed nearly 15,000 collateral release requests in 2002.
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