Friday, October 26, 2007

Once you have your charter...

You probably want to join the Federal reserve system as a member bank.

Member Banks

The nation's banks can be divided into three types according to which governmental body charters them and whether or not they are members of the Federal Reserve System. Those chartered by the federal government (through the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency in the Department of the Treasury) are national banks, and by law are members of the System.
Banks chartered by the states are divided into those that are members of the System and those that are not. State-chartered banks are not required to join the System, but they may elect to become members if they meet the standards. As of June 30, 2006, there were a total of 7,480 commercial banks nationwide, of which 2,548 were members of the System. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is responsible for supervising non-member banks.
Member banks must subscribe to stock in their regional Federal Reserve Bank in an amount equal to 3 percent of their capital and surplus. They receive a 6 percent annual dividend on their stock and may vote for Class A and Class B directors of the Reserve Bank. However the stock does not carry with it the control and financial interest that is normal for the common stock of a for-profit organization. It offers no opportunity for capital gain and may not be sold or pledged as collateral for loans. The stock is merely a legal obligation that goes along with membership.

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