January 22, 2014

Risk-based capital proposal, derivatives final rule up today

The NCUA Board is poised to issue a set of proposed risk-based capital requirements for credit unions during today's open meeting.

As described by NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz during NAFCU's 2013 Annual Conference in Boston, the agency's capital proposal was expected to impose risk-based capital requirements on credit unions with more than $50 million in assets.

NAFCU strongly supports implementing risk-based capital for credit unions, but it believes legislative changes are needed for this and has questioned the appropriateness of NCUA action at this time.

The association led the fight for the introduction of those legislative changes as part of H.R. 2572, the "Regulatory Relief Act for Credit Unions," introduced last June by Rep. Gary Miller, R-Calif.

Today's open NCUA Board meeting begins at 10 a.m. Eastern. Also slated are:

  • a final rule on derivatives investments;
  • board action on the federal credit union loan rate ceiling, currently set at 18 percent; and
  • a briefing on the agency's 2014-17 strategic plan and annual plans for 2014 and 2015.

Without board action, the FCU loan rate ceiling is scheduled to drop to 15 percent March 10. Noting a trend of rising interest rates, NAFCU has urged the board to continue the 18 percent ceiling.

Regarding derivatives, NAFCU supports authorizing credit unions to invest in derivatives but has expressed strong opposition to the notion of assessing fees on credit unions seeking to do so. The association also opposes limiting this authority to only credit unions with more than $250 million in assets.