US Treasury looks to control innovation
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), an independent bureau within the Treasury, says it is “making certain that institutions with federal charters have a regulatory framework that is receptive to responsible innovation and supervision that supports it”.
The office will be headed by a chief innovation officer assigned to OCC headquarters with staff located in Washington, New York and San Francisco.
It will be the “central point of contact” and clearing house for requests and information related to innovation. It will also implement other aspects of the agency’s framework, including:
- Establishing a technical assistance programme for banks and non-banks;
- Conducting awareness and training activities for OCC staff;
- Establishing an innovation research function;
- Promoting interagency collaboration.
The OCC expects the new office to be operating in Q1 2017.
The OCC has previous.
In June, it held a forum to discuss the issues regarding “responsible innovation”. The forum included participants from the banking industry, fintech firms, academia, and community and consumer groups. While in March, it published a paper to provide its perspective on innovation in the financial services industry.
As the fintech innovation space gets bigger, it seems more people want to control it. Let’s hope they don’t stifle it.