Appeals of Material Supervisory Determinations: Guidelines
(May 22, 2001)
At its meeting held on May 1, 2001, the Supervision
Appeals Review Committee (Committee) of the Federal Deposit Insurance
Corporation (FDIC) considered the appeal filed by [Bank] (Bank). In its
appeal the Bank contested certain material supervisory determinations
contained in the safety and soundness examination dated October 2, 2000 (the
Report) jointly prepared by the FDIC and the Financial Institutions
Division, Regulation and Licensing Department, State of New Mexico.
After carefully considering the issues raised in your
appeal, the Committee has determined that the component and composite
Uniform Financial Institution Ratings assigned at the examination were
appropriate, as further discussed below. In addition, William J. Verant,
Director of the New Mexico Financial Institutions Division, was provided
with a copy of your letter of appeal. Director Verant has advised the FDIC
that the State concurs with the ratings and overall findings contained in
The Committee shares your concern that the unusually long
period of time it has taken to examine your institution may inhibit or
undercut the intended constructive nature of the examination process. It is the
FDICs goal that the examination process be as efficient as possible for
financial institution management. It is the FDICs intent to minimize the
amount of time that the examination staff spends at each financial
institution, relative to the size and complexity of the institution under
examination. The Division of Supervisions recently appointed Dallas
Regional Director, John F. Carter, will be contacting you in the near future
to arrange a meeting to discuss this process with you.
As required by the
Guidelines for Appeals of Material Supervisory Determinations, the
reasons for the Committees decision are presented below.
Several management weaknesses were noted in the Report. These included but
are not limited to, a potential conflict of interest involving the chairman
of the board, the improper transfer of a deferred tax asset from the Banks
holding company to the Banks wholly owned subsidiary, an uncorrected
violation of law, and deficiencies in electronic banking activities and
internal routines and controls. Management oversight is still considered in
need of improvement, and management should establish a stronger control
environment. These weaknesses and others noted in the Report, resulted in
assignment of a component rating of 3 for management.
Earnings are satisfactory. Despite the decline in average assets that
resulted primarily from the transfer of other real estate owned, the Banks
net income after taxes divided by average assets as of June 30, 2000, was
less than peer levels. In addition, the Bank is reliant on a nontraditional
income source, namely the income from the Banks subsidiary. To meet the definition of a 1 rating, earnings
performance should be strong and generally well above peer
group averages. Although the Banks earnings are improving, the Banks
June 30, 2000, earnings performance warrants a 2 rating.
Sensitivity to Market Risk Rating
The Bank is exposed to moderate market risk exposure. Mortgage-backed
securities, comprising 39 percent of total assets, contain embedded option
risk which expose the Bank to greater than normal interest rate risk. The
Banks exposure to commodity price risk has increased given the sustained
regional drought conditions and low commodity prices. The 2 rating for
sensitivity to market risk is supported.
Asset Quality Rating
The Committee acknowledges improvement in asset quality, as reflected in the
upgrade of the Banks asset quality rating from a 3 at the last
examination to a 2 at this examination. However, asset quality cannot yet
be described as strong. The volume of adversely classified assets is
moderate at 37.51 percent of Tier 1 capital plus the allowance for loan and
lease losses. In addition, the Report refers to situations that are reducing
the loan demand and, as a result, the Bank has extended credit to borrowers
outside of its area. These loan relationships will likely present new
monitoring and other challenges. The Risk profile of the Banks assets is
considered satisfactory and warrants a component rating of 2.
The Report describes the asset portfolio as having a moderate level of risk;
earnings performance that is not strong, albeit satisfactory, as of the
examination date; a moderate sensitivity to market risk; and several less
than satisfactory management practices. Given the foregoing, the Report
findings comport with the definition of a composite 2.
In accordance with Guidelines for Appeals of
Material Supervisory Determinations, the scope of this review was
limited to the facts and circumstances as they existed at the time of the
examination; no consideration was given to any facts or circumstances that
occurred after that date or to any subsequent corrective action.
The decision is considered a final supervisory decision of
the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
By direction of the Supervision Appeals Review Committee of
the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.