A number of activities of potential significance have occurred in the implementation of the Dodd- Frank Act:
Systemic Regulation of Companies:
- The Financial Stability Oversight Council has a final rule exposed for comment addressing the factors and process for the designation of certain non-bank financial companies for supervision and prudential regulation by the Federal Reserve. It proposes a three step process, with all companies with total consolidated assets of more than $50 billion that satisfy one or more of five financial ratios or thresholds satisfying the first step of the process, with no exemption for any industry or type of company.
- The Federal Reserve has approved a final rule requiring that bank and non-bank financial companies which will be subject to its prudential regulation under Dodd-Frank prepare and submit a “resolution plan,” i.e., liquidation plan, as required by Dodd-Frank.
Liquidation of Insurance Companies:
- The NAIC is considering for final approval guidelines for state insurance departments designed to assist departments in preparing to for the implementation of the receivership provisions of Dodd-Frank as they may apply to insurance companies. Although insurance companies would be liquidated pursuant to applicable state law, the timing of the initiation of a liquidation and certain administrative aspects of a liquidation would occur pursuant to the provisions of Dodd-Frank, and would occur much faster than in liquidations conducted strictly under existing state laws.
Insurance Regulation Modernization:
- Dodd-Frank requires that the Federal Insurance Office (“FIO”) submit a report to Congress on how to “modernize” and improve the regulation of insurance in the United States, and the FIO has issued a request for comments on that topic. Although the FIO’s Director has stated that his office is not an insurance “regulator” or “supervisor,” the prospect of such a report may cause unease among some advocates of the state regulation of insurance.