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Financial Institution Letters

Guidance on the Use of Trade Names

May 1, 1998


SUBJECT: Interagency Statement on Branch Names

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Office of Thrift Supervision have jointly issued the attached Interagency Statement on Branch Names. The Interagency Statement was developed to help prevent customer confusion when a bank or thrift operates its offices, branches or other outlets for delivering services under a trade name.

In recent years, several banks have used names that differ from their corporate names for branches or for the delivery of services over the Internet. Although there may be valid business reasons for this practice, the agencies are concerned that it has the potential for confusing depositors about their deposit insurance coverage. The Interagency Statement urges banks and thrifts that intend to use a different name for a branch or other outlet to take reasonable steps to ensure that customers will not incorrectly assume that the branch or outlet is a separate institution from the bank or thrift, or that deposits in the different facilities are separately insured. The Interagency Statement specifies the procedures that a financial institution should use to minimize customer confusion.

For more information about the Interagency Statement, please contact Marc J. Goldstrom, Counsel in the FDIC's Legal Division, at (202) 898-8807.

Nicholas J. Ketcha Jr.

Attachment: Multi-Agency statement

Distribution: FDIC-Supervised Banks (Commercial and Savings)

NOTE: Paper copies of FDIC financial institution letters may be obtained through the FDIC's Public Information Center, 801 17th Street, N.W., Room 100, Washington, D.C. 20434 (800-276-6003 or (703) 562-2200).

Last Updated /17/1999

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