Activists Ask the FDIC to Hold Hearings on Mitsui

A coalition of community groups has asked the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. to hold hearings on the Community Reinvestment Act record of Mitsui Manufacturers Bank.

Communities for Accountable Reinvestment, the umbrella group, has been highly critical of the bank's CRA record for several years.

The coalition's request, filed last week, took the form of an "administrative complaint" that the group designed and wrote to look and read like a lawsuit. In fact, the FDIC has no process called an administrative complaint.

FDIC to Review Document

The San Francisco office of the FDIC accepted the document, however, and said it will review and consider it. An FDIC spokeswoman said the FDIC has never held a hearing on a bank's CRA performance but has held five "informal proceedings" since the CRA was instituted in 1977.

The coalition "has asked the FDIC to hold public hearings in the communities in which MMB operates, compile a record and issue a written report detailing MMB's failure and refusal to meet the banking and credit needs of the communities in which MMB operates, and to rate MMB's performance under the Community Reinvestment Act unsatisfactory," a statement by the group said.

Nancy Huntington, Mitsui's CRA officer, said she disagrees with the group's charge that Mitsui's CRA efforts are lacking. "We are comfortable with our program," she said.

The activists have clashed with the bank before The group challenged the bank's parent company, Mitsui Taiyo Kobe Bank Ltd., Tokyo, on its application to convert its New York-based trust company into a commercial bank. The Federal Reserve agreed to include the Los Angeles bank's CRA record in the application. The Fed held hearings in Los Angeles in March.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.