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July 2, 2013

OCC Winning Over Once-Wary Mutuals

“Mutual thrift defections from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency should decline now that once-nervous bankers have gotten a chance to get familiar with the regulator.

“Several mutuals switched to state charters because of the July 2011 dissolution of the Office of Thrift Supervision. Mutuals that chose to stick with the OCC seem to have fewer concerns now, says Susan Ralston, president and chief executive of Bank @LANTEC, a $102 million-asset mutual thrift in Virginia Beach.

“‘There was some fear that they wouldn’t understand us,’ Ralston says. ‘When the OCC came into my bank, they said we were welcome to stay a mutual for as long as we wanted. … I hear from most of my peers that things are going pretty well.’

“When the Dodd-Frank Act abolished the OTS, the prevalent concern was that the OCC would struggle to understand the idiosyncrasies of mutual thrifts, including dividend waivers and limitations to raising capital.”

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Read full American Banker article here

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