Financial Regulatory Forum

U.S. financial consumers need new watchdog – Obama team

U.S. Senators Christopher Dodd (l) and Richard ShelbyBy Kevin Drawbaugh and David Lawder
WASHINGTON, July 14 (Reuters) – The U.S. government’s fragmented system for protecting financial consumers is “designed to fail” and must be replaced by a single, powerful new agency, a senior U.S. Treasury official said on Tuesday. (more…)

U.S. Justice Department investigates credit default swaps

NEW YORK, July 14 (Reuters) – Markit Ltd, a dealer-owned provider of prices in the credit default swap market, said on Tuesday the U.S. Justice Department is investigating the $26.5 trillion market.

“Markit has been informed of an investigation by the Department of Justice into the credit derivatives and related markets,” the company said in a statement, but it did not specify the targets of the investigation. (more…)

US SEC mulls ways to rely less on credit ratings

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary SchapiroWASHINGTON, July 14 (Reuters) – U.S. securities regulators are looking at ways to rely less on credit ratings, Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro told lawmakers on Tuesday. (more…)

UBS data transfer to U.S. possible – Swiss judge

UBS attorneys By Lisa Jucca, European Wealth Management Correspondent

ZURICH, July 14 (Reuters) – Swiss bank UBS  could transfer client data to the United States and end a damaging tax litigation without breaching Swiss bank secrecy laws, a top Swiss judge told Reuters on Tuesday. (more…)

UK sees progress in battle over EU hedge fund law

By Huw Jones
LONDON, July 14 (Reuters) – Britain was “gaining traction” in persuading its EU partners to rein in a draft law regulating hedge funds but the industry should also get its customers out on the campaign trail, a government minister said on Tuesday. (more…)

Global accounting board drafts changes to fair value rule

LONDON, July 14 (Reuters) – The International Accounting Standards Board on Tuesday published draft plans to simplify its fair value rule that has been criticised by European Union finance ministers for amplifying the financial crisis. (more…)

Proposed commods regs could boost volatility -CME

CME   NEW YORK, July 13 (Reuters) – Rules proposed by the U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission to limit speculation in commodities markets could boost volatility, the executive chairman of exchange giant CME Group Inc said on Monday.
   “The less participants you have in the marketplace the greater the bid/offer spread is going to be,” Terry Duffy said in an interview with Reuters TV.

New US consumer agency won’t cause bank fee hikes

   WASHINGTON, July 13 (Reuters) – Banks will not have to pay higher supervisory fees if the Obama administration’s proposed new Consumer Financial Protection Agency gets off the ground and they will not have to seek the regulator’s pre-approval for “plain-vanilla” products, an administration official said on Monday.

BoE’s Bean-QE has stimulus effect even after asset buying stops

Bank of England    LONDON, July 14 (Reuters) – The Bank of England’s quantitative easing will keep stimulating demand even when the asset-buying programme stops, the central bank’s deputy governor, Charles Bean, said in an interview published on Tuesday.

U.S. SEC creates group to examine credit agencies

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary SchapiroWASHINGTON, July 13 (Reuters) – Credit rating agencies, such as Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s, are now being targeted by a squad of examiners set up by the Securities and Exchange Commission and are subject to ‘special’ examinations.

The heightened supervision was ordered by SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro, who has also directed staff to consider bringing in new regulations, particularly to prevent companies from shopping around for favorable ratings. (more…)