The new principal regulator of US national banks abolished $ 4.6 million in Coinbase Inc. stock options when he left the cryptocurrency exchange earlier this year to join the government, according to financial disclosures he was required to file.
Brian Brooks, who became interim head of the Currency Manager’s Office last month, has said he plans to leverage the experience he gained at Coinbase in San Francisco and other tech companies to push the financial technology agenda in the year 157- years. agency, including opening banking charters for technology companies.
“I think we can charter a number of organizations, some of which are current candidates with their roots in technology,” Brooks said in an interview last week, arguing that a solution for 50 state regulators is too difficult for fintech companies who want to do business nationwide. “We need a national financial system, and the OCC is the platform for doing that.”
As Coinbase’s chief legal officer, Brooks was paid $ 1.4 million in salary – other than the stock options – in the year and a half he spent with the firm, which had pressed for a charter through the OCC before making other moves to have access to the banking. system. It also received $ 1.5 million in the past two years from Fannie Mae, where she was a board member after being the firm’s chief lawyer.
Brooks traded those lucrative jobs to earn less than $ 300,000 a year running the OCC. But it still has stock and bond holdings between $ 1 million and $ 2.2 million. WNO heads are also among high-ranking government officials who often move on to high-paying jobs after their time in government.
Because he is interim regulator – not yet nominated by President Donald Trump to seek Senate confirmation – he is not required to take the ethics pledge that would limit his ability to work while lobbying after he leave the job, according to a spokeswoman for the OCC. However, Brooks has submitted a letter through the agency’s ethics office outlining companies it will keep clear of due to potential conflicts of interest, including Amazon.com Inc., Bank of America Bank of America Merrill Lynch Unit, Coinbase and several other technology companies he has worked with.
His predecessor, Joseph Otting, was one of the richest regulators in the history of an agency, having earned a fortune when OneWest Bank Group, the lender that ran for investors led by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, was acquired by CIT Group Inc. worked Brooks with Otting and Mnuchin as executive and OneWest board member.
Otting, who left the job last month, was not out of work for long. He was tapped this week to join a board Black Knight Inc., which provides software for the mortgage industry.