HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 17, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Concerns about the broad application and ambiguity of the term "fintech," the lack of fully disclosed details concerning the supervision and examination of fintech companies, and the possible federal preemption of existing, effective state consumer protection laws are three concerns cited by Pennsylvania Secretary of Banking and Securities Robin L. Wiessmann regarding a special purpose national bank charter for fintech companies proposed by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC).
Wiessmann pointed out that, while, the OCC has identified thousands of so-called fintech companies, the agency has not defined the characteristics of a fintech company. The broad, overgeneralization of the term "fintech," she noted, lends itself to disorderly dialogue among regulators and between regulators and the companies they supervise.
In addition, while the OCC contemplates extending special non purpose national charters to fintech companies, Secretary Wiessmann is concerned about the OCC's lack of clear guidance on how this federal agency will actually examine and supervise this unique class of institutions.
"Given the uncertainty surrounding which kinds of companies might become eligible for a special purpose national charter, the OCC's proposal could invite companies currently licensed by state regulators to seek a national charter," she said. "This unintended consequence could effectively preempt and negate many of the most effective consumer protection laws in a number of states, including Pennsylvania."