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Nov 6, 2013

U.S. regulator prepares crackdown on debt collectors

WASHINGTON, Nov 6 (Reuters) – Debt collectors using text
messages and social media to pursue delinquent borrowers could
come under new scrutiny as the U.S. consumer financial watchdog
warns of new rules as part of a crackdown on the collection
industry.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said on Wednesday
that before it formally proposes any rules, it wants to hear how
collectors verify borrowers’ information and communicate with
consumers.

Oct 30, 2013

US House votes to tweak Dodd-Frank in bank victory

WASHINGTON, Oct 30 (Reuters) – The U.S. House of
Representatives voted on Wednesday to scale back a much-debated
provision of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law, handing bank
lobbyists a token victory in their fight against the tougher
rules.

Big banks and their allies in Congress have been pushing to
undo part of the law that calls for walling off risky
derivatives trading by investment banks from government
backstops such as deposit insurance. They say the rule is
unnecessary and would be expensive for banks.

Oct 24, 2013

U.S. sets bank liquidity plan, says tougher than Basel

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. regulators unveiled a plan on Thursday for banks to hold enough assets they can easily sell to survive a credit crunch, calling on U.S. banks to meet new liquidity standards two years before most foreign banks must comply.

The proposal, which tells banks to hold enough liquid assets to meet their cash needs for 30 days, is a key plank of the Basel III capital rules agreed globally to make banks safer after the 2007-09 credit crisis.

Oct 24, 2013

US Fed launches bank liquidity plan, says tougher than Basel

WASHINGTON, Oct 24 (Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Reserve on
Thursday unveiled a plan requiring banks to hold enough assets
they can easily sell to survive a credit crunch, which it said
was tougher than what international regulators demanded.

The plan, which will tell banks to hold enough liquid assets
to meet their cash needs for 30 days, is a key plank of the
Basel III capital rules agreed globally to make banks safer
after the 2007-09 credit crisis.

Oct 23, 2013

U.S. consumer watchdog says committed to stiff penalties

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The head of the top U.S. consumer financial watchdog said his agency is committed to going after individuals, not just companies, when it punishes wrongdoers, reflecting a broader effort among enforcement officials to ensure penalties have real bite.

Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, told the Reuters Washington Summit on Wednesday that the agency also is seeking admissions of wrongdoing from bad actors who commit egregious violations.

Oct 12, 2013

World top bankers warn of dire consequences if U.S. defaults

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Three of the world’s most powerful bankers warned of terrible consequences if the United States defaults on its debt, with Deutsche Bank chief executive Anshu Jain claiming default would be “utterly catastrophic.”

“This would be a very rapidly spreading, fatal disease,” Jain said on Saturday at a conference hosted by the Institute of International Finance in Washington.

Oct 9, 2013

As Fed chair, Yellen unlikely to let big banks off the hook

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Big banks hoping for a break from the U.S. Federal Reserve’s tough line on regulation will be disappointed by Janet Yellen, President Barack Obama’s choice to lead the central bank.

Yellen’s primary focus will likely be monetary policy and getting Americans back to work, banking experts said, but she is not expected to divert the Fed from its current course of insisting on robust bank capital levels and risk reduction.

Oct 8, 2013

U.S. financial stability group discusses debt ceiling, shutdown

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. financial regulators discussed the federal debt ceiling and the effect of the government shutdown on market monitoring during a phone conversation on Tuesday, a Treasury Department spokesman said.

The Financial Stability Oversight Council might meet again as October 17 approaches. That is the date on which Treasury expects to exhaust its borrowing authority, spokesman Anthony Coley said in a statement.

Oct 8, 2013

Shutdown woes pile up as Washington gridlock holds

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Tourism sagged near U.S. national parks, Washington-area workers filed more unemployment claims and futures markets grappled with a lack of data as the government shutdown, now in its second week, stretched across the nation and upset many aspects of American life.

On the national seashores along North Carolina’s Outer Banks islands, business owners compared the financial magnitude of closed beaches and waterways to that of a hurricane-forced evacuation. Scott Geib, who sells photographs near the closed Cape Hatteras lighthouse, said sales were way down last week from what would normally be a good week for him in early fall.

Oct 3, 2013

U.S. consumer bureau bars payment firm over debt-settlement fees

WASHINGTON, Oct 3 (Reuters) – The U.S. consumer watchdog
said on Thursday it fined payment processor Meracord for helping
to collect illegal debt-settlement fees, part of a broader
crackdown on companies that offer to help borrowers get rid of
debt.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said
debt-settlement companies, which negotiate with creditors to
help borrowers eliminate credit card or other debt, often use
outside processing companies to collect payments from consumers.