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The legislative history for the DIDMCA amendments is sparse, and agency interpretations have barely begun to explore the possible nuances of a rule that allows one lender to borrow the rate structure authorized for other lenders. Opinions on these issues under the older National Bank Act are limited, and there is little definitive judicial construction of the DIDMCA amendments. Meanwhile, several bills are pending which would completely preempt state usury laws for all consumer credit transactions, thus rendering moot many questions about of the scope of the most favored lender doctrine. But the enactment of such preemptive legislation is speculative, and until it becomes law, the boundaries of most favored lender status for federally chartered and insured institutions will command the careful attention of creditors and debtors, courts, and federal and state supervisory agencies. This article offers some background and preliminary analysis of these issues.



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