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Nov 18, 2014

U.S. Senator Durbin opposes Obama Treasury nominee -aide

WASHINGTON, Nov 18 (Reuters) – A top U.S. Democratic senator
came out against President Barack Obama’s choice for a key U.S.
Treasury Department post on Tuesday, adding to scrutiny over the
nominee’s involvement with corporate tax deals called
“inversions.”

The White House last week announced Antonio Weiss, a top
official at investment bank Lazard, as Obama’s choice to
be the Treasury’s under secretary for domestic finance.

Nov 17, 2014

Senate panel to grill Fed’s Tarullo, bankers over commodities

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A heavyweight list of bankers and regulators will appear before a U.S. Senate committee this week in a probe into Wall Street’s role in commodity markets and ahead of possible tougher rules from the Federal Reserve.

Markets will weigh every word from Federal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo, in charge of financial regulation at the central bank, which in January said it would come out with rules to rein in banks’ activities in the market.

Nov 14, 2014

Keystone bill expected to pass House, but Senate in doubt

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives prepared to vote on Friday to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline that will help transport oil from Canada to the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, but a companion bill in the Senate may lack votes to pass next week.

The bills would circumvent the need for approval of TransCanada Corp’s $8 billion project by the Obama administration, which has been pending for more than six years.

Nov 13, 2014

House set to vote on Keystone oil pipeline on Friday

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Republican-led U.S. House of Representatives prepared to vote on Friday to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline that will help transport oil from Canada to the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, but the bill still faces hurdles to final passage.

The House planned to begin debating the bill, which is expected to pass that chamber, on Thursday. The legislation would circumvent the need for approval of TransCanada Corp’s $8 billion project by the Obama administration, which has been pending for more than six years.

Nov 13, 2014

U.S. consumer bureau proposes new rules for prepaid cards

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. consumer watchdog on Thursday proposed new rules requiring prepaid product companies to disclose fees and offer other protections to people who buy their cards.

Consumers use prepaid products to load money into accounts that can be used to make payments or get cash. Some people use the products because they do not have a bank account, while others use them to control their spending.

Nov 12, 2014

U.S. OCC fines three banks $950 million over forex misconduct

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A U.S. bank regulator on Wednesday fined three top banks a total of $950 million for failing to prevent employees’ misconduct in foreign exchange trading.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency said Bank of America Corp (BAC.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) agreed to pay $250 million, and JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Citigroup Inc (C.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) would each pay $350 million.

Nov 5, 2014

Politics would constrain Shelby as head of Senate banking panel

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Richard Shelby appears poised to retake his old job as head of the Senate Banking Committee after big Republican electoral wins, likely bringing tougher scrutiny of the Federal Reserve, big banks and housing finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

But his ability to drastically revamp financial regulation or eliminate the two government-controlled mortgage companies would be limited with Washington still closely divided even after the elections handed control of the Senate to the Republicans.

Nov 5, 2014

Wearied by partisan warfare, many women desert Obama’s Democrats

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democrats hoped women voters would help them weather a tough election year, but weariness with President Barack Obama and disgust with relentless partisan warfare in Washington prompted many to abandon the party they had backed two years earlier.

In a bitter election marked by record spending, Obama’s Democrats battled a powerful headwind of frustration among women voters who said they had grown tired of the relentless attack ads on TV and unceasing warfare between Democratic and Republican lawmakers.

Oct 13, 2014

Wall St pumps more money to Republicans, as ideology trumps issues

WASHINGTON, Oct 13 (Reuters) – Wall Street donors are
opening their wallets to back the Republican fight for control
of the U.S. Senate in November’s election, and financial
services has emerged again as the highest spending sector,
according to campaign finance reports.

But widespread skepticism about accomplishing various
financial sector policy priorities, such as scaling back the
2010 Dodd-Frank law or enacting business-friendly tax reforms,
amid Washington’s paralysis has dampened the excitement of some
traditional financial industry donors, such as big banks.

Oct 10, 2014

Ex-Fed Chair Bernanke: wanted to stop AIG default, not punish firm

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Friday on that prior to the 2008 bailout of American International Group (AIG.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), he was concerned that the insurer “was on the brink of default” and not about punishing AIG. 

Bernanke’s comments came in a fifth day of testimony by former top government officials, who mean to convince a federal judge that their actions in rescuing the insurance company were legal.