The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. on Friday urged banks to make credit available for rebuilding the storm-ravaged Northeast.

The FDIC said banks under its jurisdiction may extend loan repayment terms and take other steps to help customers in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York who face temporary financial binds caused by recent ice storms and related damage.

"This is our way of telling banks they can do things they normally wouldn't do without having examiners criticize them," said Patrick Rohan, the FDIC's Boston regional director.

The agency will also give the state-chartered, non-Federal Reserve members it supervises leeway to delay call report filings and some disclosure requirements.

The FDIC also said weather-related financial emergencies are sufficient cause for waiving the three-day waiting period for approving consumer loans.

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