An official website of the United States government
OCC Bulletin 1995-20
April 14, 1995
Share This Page:
Chief Executive Officers and Bank Counsels of all National Banks, Department and Division Heads, and all Examining Personnel
This bulletin reminds national banks of their obligations under the anti-tying provisions of 12 U.S.C. 1972(1) and advises them to implement appropriate systems and controls that promote compliance with these provisions. Congress enacted the anti-tying provisions to keep banks from using bank credit and other services to coerce customers and reduce competition.
The anti-tying provisions of 12 U.S.C. 1972(1) generally prohibit banks from extending credit, leasing or selling property, furnishing services, or varying prices on the condition that the customer:
The anti-tying provisions provide exceptions to the prohibitions. These exceptions permit a bank to extend credit, lease or sell property, furnish services, or vary prices on the condition that the customer:
The provisions also provide that the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ("Board") may by regulation or order permit exceptions to the anti-tying prohibitions. The Board has issued 12 CFR 225.7, which includes the following exceptions:
The exceptions in 12 CFR 225.7 apply only if all products involved in the tying arrangement are separately available for purchase. For purposes of the regulation, "traditional bank product" means a loan, discount, deposit, or trust service.
National banks, operating subsidiaries of national banks, and federal branches and agencies of foreign banks must comply with the anti-tying provisions. Tying arrangements may violate other laws, including the federal antitrust laws, in addition to the anti-tying provisions.
The following are examples of arrangements that would be allowed under the anti-tying provisions.
The following are examples of tying arrangements that are prohibited by the anti-tying provisions, unless exempted by the Board.
National banks should adopt and implement systems and controls to provide for adequate training of employees and to promote compliance with the anti-tying provisions.
Suggested systems and controls include, but are not limited to, provisions for:
Suggested audit and compliance programs include, but are not limited to, provisions for:
The U.S. Department of Justice and the OCC may initiate actions to remedy violations of the anti-tying provisions by national banks. In addition, customers or competitors, who suffer injury to their businesses or property due to violations, may (1) pursue a civil suit for treble damages for those injuries and attorneys fees and (2) sue for injunctive relief against threatened loss or damages resulting from violations of the anti-tying provisions.
For further information, contact the Office of the Chief National Bank Examiner, (202) 649-6670, or the Securities and Corporate Practices Division, (202) 649-5510.
Jimmy F. Barton
Chief National Bank Examiner