US Senator urges OCC to rescind bank charters of 3 crypto companies

The OCC is looking into whether bank charters given to 3 crypto companies were all good.

US Senate banking chair Sherrod Brown has pushed a top regulator to reconsider granting national bank charters to three cryptocurrency firms, reports Politico.

The Ohio senator said it was unclear if the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) “observed due diligence” before approving Paxos, Protego, and Anchorage earlier this year, and urged it halt issuing new ones.

“Charter approvals lead customers to underestimate the risks related to these assets” and “could undermine faith in the safety and stability of the entire banking system,” Brown stated in an open letter to OCC chief Michael Hsu.

All three companies offer financial services to crypto industry participants, including custody, asset management, and banking.

CryptoComptroller awarded the bank charters

Hsu’s predecessor Brian Brooks encouraged crypto firms to apply for bank charters to operate nationally. Brooks also green-lit the three Brown singled out in their letter.

But Hsu (who just took over as OCC comptroller) has already laid out plans to further regulate crypto firms. “I have asked staff to review these actions,” he noted.

  • The OCC charters, regulates, and supervises all national banks in the US.
  • The comptroller of the OCC is appointed by the US President.
  • Former President Donald Trump appointed Brian Brooks, Hsu’s predecessor.

[Read more: Binance US hires ex-Coinbase exec to compete with Coinbase]

In a Wednesday hearing at the House Committee of Financial Services, Hsu suggested a possible “inter-agency policy sprint team just on crypto” with the OCC, Federal Reserve, and other agencies.

As for crypto companies still awaiting national approval for trust charters, the current comptroller said they were under review — but the timeline was unlikely to “drag.”

Protos has reached out to Paxos, Protego, and Anchorage for comment.

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