Federal Government Shuts Down; Bank Regulators Remain Open
January 2, 2019>
With the federal government shut down since Dec. 22, several agencies have closed all but essential operations. Federal banking regulators -- the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, FDIC, Federal Reserve and OCC -- have remained open as their funding does not come from congressional spending. However, federal lending programs, including the Small Business Administration, Federal Housing Administration and USDA programs, have been curtailed.
While the shutdown persists, the Securities and Exchange Commission is prioritizing investor protection and market integrity functions; the Commodity Futures Trading Commission has likewise shut down all but essential market support functions. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network is continuing to process industry anti-money laundering filings. For more information, visit individual agency and department websites.
Averting fears of a lapse in the National Flood Insurance Program, which was coupled to the spending bill that expired on Dec. 21, Congress passed a standalone bill that extended the National Flood Insurance Program's authorization through May 31, 2019. When the Federal Emergency Management Agency unexpectedly said on the day after Christmas that it would stop issuing or renewing NFIP policies, ABA advocacy contributed to FEMA’s swift reversal of its decision.
Banks of all sizes have already begun working with affected customers -- principally federal employees and contractors, who will not be paid during a protracted shutdown -- to waive fees or provide other accommodations.