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Sep 3, 2014

U.S. regulators to vote on liquidity, swap margin rules

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. regulators met on Wednesday to adopt rules for banks to hold enough easy-to-sell assets to keep them afloat during a crunch, after many were caught short of cash during the 2007-09 financial crisis.

The rules, a key plank of a global agreement to make big banks such as JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup safer, are a new building block as regulators across the world work to make banks sturdier and head off a future meltdown.

Sep 2, 2014

U.S. Republican lawmakers say regulators treat insurers unfairly

WASHINGTON, Sept 2 (Reuters) – A group of Republican
lawmakers on Tuesday accused U.S. regulators of “disparate
treatment” of nonbank financial firms that are currently being
considered for tougher oversight.

The lawmakers, led by Representative Scott Garrett of New
Jersey, said that in trying to identify companies so large that
their failure could pose a potential threat to financial
markets, regulators have considered more analysis and public
feedback on asset management firms than they did about insurance
companies.

Aug 26, 2014

Final U.S. liquidity rules to exclude muni bonds -source

WASHINGTON, Aug 26 (Reuters) – U.S. banks will not be able
to include municipal bonds in mandatory buffers of easy-to-sell
assets under rules nearing final approval, a person familiar
with the process said on Tuesday.

The U.S. Federal Reserve weighed whether certain individual
cities’ and states’ debt should count, but did not include them
in the final rules, set to be approved on Sept. 3 as part of a
global agreement to make banks safer, the person said.

Aug 21, 2014

Republican lawmaker slams SEC over unauthorized leaks to media

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Republican lawmaker slammed the Securities and Exchange Commission over leaks of confidential information to media outlets, including Reuters, calling the disclosures “unacceptable.”

Representative Jeb Hensarling, who leads the House of Representatives’ Financial Services Committee, said in the letter to SEC Chair Mary Jo White that the leaks raised questions about who attends closed agency meetings and hurt the SEC’s ability to enforce securities laws.

Aug 15, 2014

Smaller banks see regulatory relief after U.S. elections

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – All but the biggest U.S. banks could see relief from some financial reforms after the November elections even if control of the U.S. Congress remains divided between Democrats and Republicans.

    Post-election committee leadership changes and growing momentum behind bipartisan fixes may lead to tweaks to the 2010 Dodd-Frank law for the smallest community banks, larger firms such as PNC Financial Services (PNC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) of Pittsburgh and Regions Financial (RF.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) of Birmingham, Alabama, and insurers, lobbyists and congressional staffers said.

Aug 15, 2014

Analysis – Smaller banks see regulatory relief after US elections

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – All but the biggest U.S. banks could see relief from some financial reforms after the November elections even if control of the U.S. Congress remains divided between Democrats and Republicans.

Post-election committee leadership changes and growing momentum behind bipartisan fixes may lead to tweaks to the 2010 Dodd-Frank law for the smallest community banks, larger firms such as PNC Financial Services (PNC.N: Quote, Profile, Research) of Pittsburgh and Regions Financial (RF.N: Quote, Profile, Research) of Birmingham, Alabama, and insurers, lobbyists and congressional staffers said.

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 12, 2014

U.S. consumer agency workers pan poor managers, unclear priorities

WASHINGTON, Aug 12 (Reuters) – The new U.S. financial
consumer agency will improve managers’ training and in-house
communications, its director said on Tuesday after an internal
report found employees were concerned about inexperienced
supervisors and confused about pay practices.

Richard Cordray, head of the Consumer Financial Protection
Bureau (CFPB), said in an email to staff that he requested the
probe after allegations surfaced of unfair performance rating
practices and possible discrimination at the bureau.

Aug 8, 2014

FICO’s new scoring model to help lenders better assess risk

Aug 8 (Reuters) – A move by personal credit score provider
FICO to leave out or discount medical debt from its
scores will boost the credit record of many borrowers, while
helping lenders to better assess risk.

The company, formerly known as Fair Isaac Corp, said on
Thursday that overdue medical payments that have already been
settled will be ignored while calculating credit risk.

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.