U.S. Chamber Statement on Order to Rescind MetLife’s 'Systemically Important' Designation

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 - 12:45pm

WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Center for Capital Markets Competitiveness (CCMC) President and CEO David Hirschmann issued the following statement today regarding an order by U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer to rescind the Financial Stability Oversight Council’s (FSOC) designation of MetLife as a “systemically important financial institution (SIFI)”:

“We are pleased with this order as we have long had concerns with FSOC’s process for designating systemically important financial institutions—that they arbitrarily picked the biggest institutions and labeled them as “systemically important” without the data, evidence, or reasoning to back it up.

“MetLife’s designation has proven that when labeling a company as a systemically important financial institution, FSOC needs to be more transparent and clearly define the process so that companies have the ability to fairly defend themselves. It is imperative that companies are able to understand why they received the label, how they can avoid it, or how they will be regulated when designated. Currently, that is not the case. Additionally, a clearly defined process must include a path to de-designation so that companies can take appropriate actions themselves instead of having to go through the courts.”

The U.S. Chamber filed an amicus brief in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in support of MetLife in MetLife, Inc. v. Financial Stability Oversight Council, and in 2013 CCMC released the “Financial Stability Oversight Council Reform Agenda,” which offers specific recommendation in a number of areas to reform the systemic risk designation process by establishing clear rules of due process.