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ADVERTISING BY FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS, FINANCIAL INSTITUTION HOLDING COMPANIES AND SUBSIDIARIES OR SERVICE CORPORATIONS(Reg. 9)
SUMMARY: In 1986, the Bureau of Financial Institutions (t/k/a the Bureau of Banking) revised Regulation #9 to reflect changes resulting from deregulation and competition within the industry. At that time, changes in both State and federal law broadened the scope of products and services that could be provided by the regulated industry to include nondeposit investment products such as insurance and securities. Since 1986, a number of State and federal laws governing distribution of nondeposit investment products or services have been promulgated.  Disclosure and advertising requirements for credit-related products also have been strengthened. Finally, federal rules implementing the Truth in Savings Act have been promulgated. 
The current iteration of Regulation #9 includes restrictions on advertising of commercial deposits and related services not found in federal law. The Bureau of Financial Institutions proposes to repeal and replace Regulation #9, narrowing its application to the advertising of deposit accounts and related services consistent with federal law, while retaining relevant guidelines for all types of deposit accounts. Guidance for advertising of consumer deposit accounts is similar to rules issued under federal law. Advertising of any product or service by regulated industry will continue to be generally subject to regulation pursuant 9-B M.R.S.A. § 231, 241 and 242.
Title 9-B M.R.S.A. § 215 states that the Superintendent shall have the power to implement by rule any provision of law relating to the supervision of financial institutions and their subsidiaries or financial holding companies and their subsidiaries.
Title 9-B M.R.S.A. § 241 gives the Superintendent the power to promulgate rules defining, limiting or proscribing acts and practices which, when engaged in by a financial institution or its subsidiary or by a financial institution holding company or its subsidiary, are determined to be anticompetitive, unfair, deceptive or otherwise injurious to the public interest.
Title 9-B M.R.S.A. § 242 gives the Superintendent the authority to promulgate rules defining, limiting or proscribing false, misleading or deceptive advertising or representations by a financial institution authorized to do business in this State, a credit union authorized to do business in this State, an association of such institutions or a financial institution holding company.
The purpose of this rulemaking is to repeal and replace Bureau of Financial Institution Regulation #9 (Chapter 109). This rule sets forth guidelines for advertising of deposit accounts by financial institutions, subsidiaries of financial institutions, financial institution holding companies, subsidiaries of financial institution holding companies and representatives of financial institutions or financial institution holding companies, to provide guidance on advertising that is considered to be false, misleading or deceptive.
IV. General Provisions
Advertising of deposit accounts by a regulated institution may not be inaccurate or misleading. Inaccurate or misleading advertising, includes but is not limited to, making any statement or claim which cannot be substantiated, which misrepresents the terms or conditions of the deposit accounts offered or which has a tendency or capacity to deceive.
V. Use of the Words "Free," "Fees Waived" or "Profit"
It is recognized that the Comptroller of the Currency, the Federal Reserve Bank, the Office of Thrift Institutions, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and the National Credit Union Administration may have promulgated regulations concerning advertising activities of financial institutions, financial institution holding companies or their subsidiaries. It is further recognized that there may exist differences in scope and coverage between this regulation and regulations promulgated by those federal regulatory agencies. It is not the intent of this regulation to permit any practice which is not permitted by the appropriate federal agency. To the contrary, besides any other restriction or limitation stated herein, each financial institution must fully comply with the regulations of any applicable federal agency.
AUTHORITY: Title 9-B M.R.S.A. § 215, 241 and 242
 E.g., Bureau of Financial Institution’s Regulation #29, "Financial Institutions and Broker-Dealers Engaging in Third Party Brokerage Arrangements" (effective 1/18/2003); Bureau of Financial Institution’s Regulation #30, " Distribution of Annuities Through Financial Institutions" (1/1/1995); Bureau of Financial Institution’s Regulation #39, "Sale of Insurance Products by Financial Institutions and Supervised Lenders" (11/26/1997); "Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Interagency Statement on Retail Sales of Nondeposit Investment Products" (2/15/1994) and "Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council Interagency Guidance on Electronic Financial Services and Consumer Compliance" (7/15/98).
Copies of 12 C.F.R. Part 204.2 may be obtained at cost from the Bureau of Financial Institutions or from the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, 600 Atlantic Avenue Boston, MA 02016 (Tel: 617-973-3000). Copied may be obtained at no cost via the Internet at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/cfr/index.html .
Last Updated: June 5, 2013
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