WASHINGTON -- The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Tuesday unveiled several initiatives aimed at providing regulatory relief to Texas and Louisiana banks, as borrowers experience difficulties from damage caused by Hurricane Ike.

The FDIC, taking note of the serious impact the hurricane has had on operations of financial institutions, will provide regulatory assistance to institutions subject to FDIC supervision, the agency said in a statement.

Extending repayment terms, restructuring existing loans or easing terms for new loans could strengthen communities devastated by Hurricane Ike, but these initiatives have to be done "in a manner consistent with sound banking practices," the FDIC said.

Federal disasters were declared for select Texas counties and Louisiana parishes Sept. 7 and Sept. 11.

"The FDIC encourages depository institutions in declared disaster areas to meet the financial service needs of their communities," the FDIC statement says.

In supervising financial institutions affected by the hurricane, the FDIC will take the unusual circumstances into consideration. The agency is easing reporting requirements for banks and advises any institutions that expect delays in filing reports to contact the FDIC Dallas Regional office.

The FDIC expects lending, investment, publishing requirements and consumer-law practices in certain regions to be affected.

"The FDIC realizes that effects on local businesses and individuals are often transitory, and that prudent efforts to adjust or alter terms on existing loans in areas affected by the hurricane should not be subject to examiner criticism," the statement read.

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