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Aug 15, 2014

AIG boosting Washington lobbying effort as hiatus prompted by crisis ends

WASHINGTON, Aug 15 (Reuters) – Insurer American
International Group is ramping up its lobbying team
in Washington, almost six years after it halted such efforts
following its rescue by the U.S. government during the financial
crisis.

Many large companies deploy a handful of staff to provide
access to Capitol Hill and the White House, but AIG has employed
no officially registered lobbyists since 2009. Some of its
government relations positions in Washington, which companies
typically use to influence policymaking by regulators and other
government officials, have been left vacant.

Aug 13, 2014

FDIC’s Hoenig tells banks to quickly change derivatives contracts

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Banks need to urgently change a provision in derivatives contracts that prevents them from smoothly winding down their business if they start failing during a crisis, a top U.S. regulator told Reuters on Wednesday.

Thomas Hoenig, second in command at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, said the so-called early termination rights were the most pressing problem regulators found last week with documents that show how banks can go through bankruptcy court during a crisis that threatens their solvency.

Aug 11, 2014

U.S. watchdog calls bitcoin ‘Wild West’ of finance

WASHINGTON, Aug 11 (Reuters) – Virtual currencies such as
bitcoin are the “Wild West” of financial products because of
risks including huge swings in exchange rates, the U.S. Consumer
Financial Protection Bureau said on Monday.

“Virtual currencies are not backed by any government or
central bank, and at this point consumers are stepping into the
Wild West when they engage in the market,” CFPB Director Richard
Cordray said in a statement.

Aug 8, 2014

Republicans sue SEC to block political donations rule

WASHINGTON, Aug 8 (Reuters) – Republican politicians sued
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, seeking to throw
out a rule that limits political donations by investment
advisers.

The Republican state committees from New York and Tennessee
said the federal securities regulator had flouted due procedure
when adopting its Political Contribution Rule, which they said
also violated the constitutional right to freedom of speech.

Aug 5, 2014

U.S. regulators set ultimatum for banks to improve crisis plans

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. regulators on Tuesday told banks to come up with better living wills, inching a step closer to taking action if these plans to avoid taxpayer bailouts during a future crisis were still deficient next year.

The plans submitted by the banks last year showed important shortcomings, the Federal Reserve and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said, telling them to show in 2015 that they had made “significant progress” to address a range of issues.

Jul 31, 2014

U.S. financial risk council to review asset management

WASHINGTON, July 31 (Reuters) – The top U.S. regulatory
panel tasked with policing the safety of the financial system
said on Thursday it is launching a review of potential risks in
the asset management industry.

But the Financial Stability Oversight Council was unlikely
to designate any asset management firm as “systemically
important” as part of the review, a source familiar with the
council said, a tag that carries more regulatory scrutiny and
oversight by the Federal Reserve.

Jul 31, 2014

New U.S. CFTC head says he will be tough cop, tweak rules

WASHINGTON, July 31 (Reuters) – The new head of the U.S.
derivatives regulator on Thursday pledged he would be a tough
cop now that the agency has largely finished a raft of new rules
to oversee the $710 trillion global swaps market.

Tim Massad, who took the helm at the Commodity Futures
Trading Commission in June, also said he would tweak any rules
designed to rein in Wall Street firms if they made it harder for
others, such as energy companies that use derivatives to hedge
risk, to access the market.

Jul 28, 2014

U.S. derivatives regulator faces test in big courtroom showdowns

WASHINGTON, July 28 (Reuters) – The U.S. federal agency
regulating derivatives has fought just three trials since 2011,
all against small-time fraudsters in Florida. Now it is poised
to take on a series of formidable opponents in the biggest
courtroom tests yet of its efforts to crack down on market
wrongdoing.

A loss in the courtroom would be a setback for the Commodity
Futures Trading Commission as it tries to catch up with its
sister agencies, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which have already adopted
more aggressive tactics toward reining in Wall Street excesses.

Jul 28, 2014

U.S. derivatives regulator prepares for courtroom showdowns

WASHINGTON, July 28 (Reuters) – The U.S. federal agency
regulating derivatives has fought just three trials since 2011,
all against small-time fraudsters in Florida. Now it is poised
to take on a series of formidable opponents in the biggest
courtroom tests yet of its efforts to crack down on market
wrongdoing.

A loss in the courtroom would be a setback for the Commodity
Futures Trading Commission as it tries to catch up with its
sister agencies, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which have already adopted
more aggressive tactics toward reining in Wall Street excesses.

Jul 23, 2014

U.S. swaps regulator O’Malia to head bank lobby group

WASHINGTON/HONG KONG, July 23 (Reuters) – A member of the
U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission will become the new
head of a bank lobby group that is fighting the derivatives
regulator in court over a crucial new rule curtailing Wall
Street.

The International Swaps and Derivatives Association said on
Wednesday that Scott O’Malia, a Republican who often voted
against new CFTC policy in the wake of the financial crisis,
will become the trade group’s next chief executive.

    • About Douwe

      "I head up the Financial Services team in London. We're 20 journalists, covering M&A, IPOs, restructuring, banking, real estate, investment management, hedge funds and private equity. I've worked for Reuters in Zurich, Frankfurt and Amsterdam."
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