Hemp Banking Guidance to be Issued Soon by FDIC

November 8, 2019

On Tuesday, the FDIC told Banking Dive that within a week, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Federal Reserve and Financial Crimes Enforcement Network are developing interagency guidance on hemp banking for hemp-related businesses.

The FDIC also said that last week after the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued the draft rules, the bank regulators also hatched a plan to release their interagency guidance soon.

Hemp is a strain of the cannabis plant whose THC levels must remain below 0.3%. It was legalized under the 2018 Farm Bill. However, banks are still questioning whether they can do business with businesses associated with hemp.

Lawmakers, farmers, and banks looking to service the hemp industry will soon receive hemp banking rules from the FDIC.

Financial institutions have called for the regulators to resolve the issue with guidance as they are still not sure if they should extend banking services to the hemp industry. Hemp businesses are still facing resistance when it comes to opening bank accounts for their companies, said the Democratic Senators Michael Bennet and Chuck Schumer.

In a meeting held with various state officials, the FDIC Chair, Jelena McWilliams, asked about applications and how the THC levels in hemp are regulated and maintained below the stipulated 0.3% threshold. She also noted that bankers are in a bind where hemp banking is concerned.

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