Douglas C. Manditch, chairman and chief executive of Islandia-based Empire...

Douglas C. Manditch, chairman and chief executive of Islandia-based Empire National Bank. Credit: Handout, 2010

Islandia-based Empire National Bank has emerged from an oversight agreement with the federal Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, its primary regulator, the bank said.

Douglas Manditch, the bank's chairman and chief executive, said the OCC decision will help the bank improve its earnings and its growth potential.

"In its order terminating the supervisory agreement, the OCC noted that the ongoing safe and sound operation of the bank did not require" further supervision, the bank said in a Tuesday news release.

The regulatory agreement had been signed Oct. 21, 2010. Newsday reported in December 2010 that the OCC had stepped in to regulate Empire National's operations after the bank grew too quickly, and it "found unsafe and unsound banking practices relating to earnings and liquidity at the bank."

The 2010 OCC agreement had required the bank to take steps to maintain adequate capital, improve profitability, avoid relying too much on commercial real estate lending, avoid seeking brokered deposits, and to take other steps to ensure the bank is stable. Brokered deposits, while useful in achieving growth, are considered by regulators to be less stable than "core" deposits from customers in the community.

Photo: Empire National Bank chairman and chief executive,  Douglas Manditch.

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