Reporter, Washington, D.C.
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May 31, 2012

US consumer cop taking more time on mortgage rule

WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) – The new consumer financial
bureau plans to take more time than earlier planned to finalize
a highly anticipated set of requirements that lenders will have
to follow to make sure prospective borrowers have the ability to
repay their mortgages.

On Thursday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)
announced it is seeking more public feedback on the issue but
still plans to have a final rule out by the end of the year.

May 31, 2012

US House panel votes to give New York bank a break

WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) – Members of the New York
congressional delegation on Thursday defended legislation that
would come to the direct aid of a single lender, saying it is
not political cronyism.

The House of Representative Financial Services Committee
voted 35 to 15 on Thursday to approve a bill that would benefit
Emigrant Bank, a lender headquartered in New York City.

May 31, 2012

Jamie Dimon to appear before Senate panel on June 13

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – JPMorgan Chase and Co Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon will testify before the U.S. Senate Banking Committee on June 13 to discuss the bank’s recent trading losses, the committee said on Thursday.

The committee had previously asked Dimon to appear on June 7.

“June 13 is the only date in June that works for both the Senate Banking Committee and Mr. Dimon,” the committee said in a statement.

May 31, 2012

Dimon to appear before Senate panel June 13

WASHINGTON, May 31 (Reuters) – JPMorgan Chase and Co
Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon will testify before the U.S.
Senate Banking Committee on June 13 to discuss the bank’s recent
trading losses, the committee said on Thursday.

The committee had previously asked Dimon to appear on June
7.

“June 13 is the only date in June that works for both the
Senate Banking Committee and Mr. Dimon,” the committee said in a
statement.

May 30, 2012

Fed to consider Basel III rules next week

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Federal Reserve is scheduled to vote next week on a highly anticipated proposal for implementing an international agreement on higher capital standards for banks, known as Basel III.

The Fed announced the June 7 meeting, which will be open to the public, on its website on Wednesday. The U.S. central bank is expected to put the proposal out for public comment.

May 24, 2012

Bank earnings rebound, but lending slackens

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The banking industry enjoyed its highest earnings since the first half of 2007 in the first quarter, but lending slowed, reversing what had been an encouraging trend in loan growth.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp’s quarterly report, released on Thursday, showed the industry earned $35.3 billion in the first quarter, up $6.6 billion, or 22.9 percent, from a year earlier. The increase was largely due to banks setting aside less money to guard against loan losses.

May 23, 2012

Consumer watchdog focusing on prepaid cards

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The consumer financial watchdog is turning its attention to the growing prepaid card market, announcing on Wednesday that it was seeking information about how to better regulate the industry.

The cards are being used by more consumers each year, particularly low-income Americans, in place of traditional checking accounts.

May 23, 2012

U.S. consumer watchdog focusing on prepaid cards

WASHINGTON, May 22 (Reuters) – The U.S. consumer financial
watchdog is turning its attention to the growing prepaid card
market, announcing on Wednesday that it was seeking information
about how to better regulate the industry.

The cards are being used by more consumers each year,
particularly low-income Americans, in place of traditional
checking accounts.

May 22, 2012

U.S. risk council identifies initial set of clearinghouses

WASHINGTON, May 22 (Reuters) – A council of U.S. regulators
on Tuesday approved an initial list of clearinghouses to be
designated as “systemically important,” a label that would
subject them to new rules and tougher oversight.

The group of regulators, the Financial Stability Oversight
Council, did not disclose names of the clearinghouses. Under
Dodd-Frank, the financial reform law that created the council,
companies are allowed to contest the designation.

May 22, 2012

SEC says probing JPMorgan’s financial reporting

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The head of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission told lawmakers on Tuesday that her agency is probing JPMorgan Chase and Co’s financial reporting and emphasized that big banks are required to publicly disclose changes to the models they use to measure risk.

SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro assured a Senate Banking Committee that the SEC is investigating JPMorgan’s revelation earlier this month that it suffered at least $2 billion in losses on complex trades that started as hedges but morphed into a risky bet.