On July 1, under law, the Export-Import Bank's charter expired. Under law, Ex-Im is allowed to exist "as a corporate entity of the United States... for the purposes of orderly liquidation," and no other purposes.

But is Ex-Im actually liquidating? It doesn't appear so, according to a letter Ex-Im chairman Fred Hochberg sent Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and other conservative senators.

"There is no definition of 'orderly liquidation' in Section 7, nor a generally accepted meaning otherwise," Hochberg explained in the letter.

He writes that Ex-Im is currently experiencing a "lapse in authority to approve new transactions."

Further, he writes that Ex-Im is "prohibiting any new applications or work on applications" not approved by June 30.

But as far as liquidating — unloading its assets to other agencies or the private sector, Hochberg writes that Ex-Im is merely "assessing its options for determining the optimal path for an orderly restructuring."

There are "obstacles" to liquidating, Hochberg writes, such as the problem that "Other agencies do not have the depth of expertise in the area of international finance that we have here at EXIM Bank...."

Hochberg's letter responds to a letter Rubio and the others sent on July 1, the day Ex-Im entered liquidation.