A yearlong dispute between the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and Hamilton Bank ended on paper last month, but the Miami community bank is still fuming about the regulators policies on lending in Latin America.
On Sept. 21 the OCC released a consent agreement instructing $1.7 billion-asset Hamilton to adhere to OCC guidelines on international lending. The bank and the regulator had been at odds over how much Hamilton should keep in reserve to cover loans made to customers in Ecuador or to U.S. customers doing business there. In the spirit of cooperation and to move on to more positive things, we signed the consent order, said Hamilton president J. Carlos Bernace. But until this day we do not agree with the OCC, to put it mildly.