OCC's Dugan: Focus on Compliance Still a Priority Despite Credit IssuesComptroller of the Currency John C. Dugan this week told his agency's compliance examiners that they need to stay focused on compliance despite the industry's recent credit issues.
"We simply cannot take our eyes off compliance while we address safety and soundness," said Dugan, speaking at the OCC Compliance Conference in Orlando, FL. "We know how to deal with credit issues, and we will work our way through these very difficult problems. What I don't want, though, is to finish dealing with the industry's safety and soundness issues only to find that we've allowed significant compliance problems to develop in their place."
Dugan stressed that examiners can't afford to put compliance supervision on hold in the midst of the increasing risks to safety and soundness. "As safety and soundness issues come to the fore, it is imperative that we guard against compliance complacency," he told examiners. While noting the agency's credo of risk-based supervision, and as the risk to safety and soundness continues to rise, "that does not mean that compliance supervision will take a back seat." He added that some compliance issues, especially consumer protection issues, will continue to be focused on by the current Congress, and he sees that trend continuing, "regardless of the outcome of the Presidential election," even if credit and safety and soundness issues become worse. (Read Dugan's speech: "The Need to Stay Focused on Compliance Supervision" ).