A new rule by the U.S. Office of the Comptroller of the Currency that exempts national banking conglomerates from state consumer protection and lending laws harms consumers, small business and the local real estate community, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday. NAR joined the National Association of Attorneys General, the U.S. Conference of State Banking Supervisors, the Consumer Federation of America and U.S. Reps. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) at a press conference Wednesday in opposition to the rule. The OCC adopted a regulation Feb. 12 that allows national banks by virtue of their federal charter to ignore state banking, advertising, privacy and insurance laws designed to protect consumers from predatory lending and other abusive banking practices. It also puts local real estate companies at a significant competitive disadvantage when compared to national banks and their operating subsidiaries, which no longer have to comply with state re...
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