The Bank Slate


Washington Federal in Seattle to switch bank charters

Washington Federal in Seattle plans to switch the charter for its bank from a national association to a state-chartered bank. 

The $19.7 billion-asset company disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday that it filed an application on Dec. 31 with the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions. 

If approved, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. would replace the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency as the bank’s primary federal regulator. The bank would also cancel its holdings of stock of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and terminate its membership in the Federal Reserve System. 

The Fed would remain the company’s primary federal regulator. 

The move comes just weeks after the company announced that the OCC had freed its bank from a three-year-old consent order. The order required WaFd Bank to enhance its Bank Secrecy Act program, among other things. 

The bank also paid a $2.5 million civil penalty tied to the order.

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