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NR 2006-34
Contact: Robert M. Garsson
(202) 874-5770

OCC Clarifies Community Development Investment Authority For Investments in Minority Owned Banks and Thrifts

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency announced a new interpretive "Question and Answer" which will clarify the criteria under which a national bank may make an investment in a minority-owned bank or thrift under the Part 24 community development investment authority.

"Minority-owned financial institutions play a critical role in bringing needed liquidity to traditionally underserved communities to facilitate business expansion and economic development," said Comptroller of the Currency John C. Dugan. "This clarification of the OCC's community development investment authority will help ensure that minority-owned institutions can attract the capital they need to perform this important role."

The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) allows banks and thrifts to earn positive CRA consideration towards their CRA ratings by making investments in minority-owned banks or thrifts. In August 2003, this authority was expanded to allow a national bank to make a Part 24 investment in any CRA qualified investment activity. This new interpretive Question and Answer clarifies that, consistent with the CRA criteria, a national bank may make a Part 24 investment in any minority-owned bank or thrift that serves the local community in which it is chartered.

Additional information about the Part 24 authority or this policy change can be found on OCC's Web-site at http://www.occ.gov/topics/community-affairs/resource-directories/public-welfare-investments/common-part-24-questions.html#MWOB.

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