The Federal Reserve Board yesterday approved an application by First Citizens BancShares to increase its ownership interest in Carter Bank & Trust from 4.9 percent to 9.0 percent of voting shares.

The BHC Act requires BHCs to request approval in order to directly or indirectly acquire more than 5% of a bank’s voting shares. In connection with the application, First Citizens made enforceable commitments (“passivity commitments”) to the Fed in order to show that it would not exercise a controlling influence over Carter Bank & Trust.

Furthermore, non-controlling interests in directly competing depository institutions may raise competitive issues under the BHC Act. Because of substantial overlap in some markets, First Citizens has also made enforceable commitments to not acquire any confidential or nonpublic financial information about Carter Bank & Trust.