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Financial Institution Letter

Joint Statement on CRA Consideration for Activities in Response to the COVID-19

March 19, 2020  |  FIL-19-2020

Summary:

The Federal Reserve Board, the FDIC, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (the agencies) recognize the potential for the Coronavirus Disease (referred to as COVID-19) to adversely affect the customers and operations of financial institutions. The agencies encourage financial institutions to work with affected customers and communities, particularly those that are low- and moderate-income. Pursuant to the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), the agencies will provide favorable consideration of certain retail banking services, retail lending activities, and community development activities related to this national emergency.

Statement of Applicability to Institutions with Total Assets under $1 Billion: This Financial Institution Letter applies to all FDIC-supervised financial institutions.

Highlights:

  • The agencies recognize that financial institutions working with affected customers during disasters and national emergencies serves the long-term interests of these communities and the financial system, when consistent with safe and sound banking practices and applicable laws, including consumer protection laws.
  • Pursuant to the CRA, the agencies will favorably consider retail banking services and retail lending activities in a financial institution's assessment areas that are responsive to the needs of low- and moderate-income individuals, small businesses, and small farms affected by COVID-19 consistent with safe and sound banking practices.
  • In light of the declaration of a national emergency, the attached interagency statement clarifies that financial institutions will receive CRA consideration for community development (CD) activities.
  • Qualifying CD activities include those that help to revitalize or stabilize low- or moderate-income geographies as well as distressed underserved non metropolitan middle income geographies, and that support community services targeted to low- or moderate-income individuals.
  • Favorable consideration will be given to CD activities located in a broader statewide or regional area that includes a bank's CRA Assessment Area and that help to stabilize communities affected by the COVID-19, provided that such institutions are responsive to the CD needs and opportunities that exist in their own assessment area(s).
  • This statement shall be effective through the six-month period after the national emergency declaration is lifted, unless extended by the agencies.

Suggested Distribution:

FDIC-Supervised Institutions

Suggested Routing:

Chief Executive Officer
Chief Loan Officer
Compliance Officer

Attachments:

Paper copies of FDIC FILs may be obtained through the FDIC's Public Information Center, 3501 Fairfax Drive, E-1002, Arlington, VA 22226 (1-877-275-3342 or 703-562-2200).