Wall Street Regulation Needs to be Tougher,  Americans Overwhelmingly Agree in New Poll
July 18, 2014 – 11:17 am | Comments Off

Nearly five years after the financial crisis, a new national poll – conducted on behalf of Americans for Financial Reform and the Center for Responsible Lending – shows continued bipartisan support for tougher regulation of the financial industry and its products and services. A sweeping majority of voters (78%) believe that financial rules and enforcement need to be strengthened, and that Wall Street’s bad practices have not changed enough.

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AFR in the News: Wells Fargo, PNC Draw Protest of Arbitration Clauses (American Banker)
November 21, 2014 – 3:58 pm

“The activists hand-delivered protest petitions Thursday that, they said, contained 67,000 signatures. Arbitration clauses put consumers at an unfair disadvantage in disputes with their banks, the groups said… Consumer Action, Americans for Financial Reform, Public Citizen, the Other 98%, Alliance for Justice, the American Association for Justice and the National Association of Consumer Advocates helped organize the petitions.”

AFR in the News: After Criticism, Fed Will Study Wall St. Oversight (NY Times)
November 21, 2014 – 3:54 pm

“Under pressure to show that it is up to the task of regulating giant Wall Street firms, the Federal Reserve issued a surprise announcement on Thursday that it would review crucial aspects of its bank supervision. The Fed asked its inspector general to look into whether top supervisors were getting the information they needed to make their decisions. The Fed also said it wanted the inspector general to determine if top officials were hearing all the opinions of Fed bank examiners.”

AFR joins 8 Allied Groups and More than 67,000 People in Telling PNC and Well Fargo to Stop Using Forced Arbitration
November 20, 2014 – 11:06 am

“These non-negotiable terms are one of the ways that companies rig the financial system against consumers and avoid accountability. These terms deny customers access to courts should they seek to pursue legal claims against your company and deprive your customers of important legal protections. The result is that consumers cannot practically or fairly resolve disputes with you or
seek remedies for harm caused by your wrongful conduct.”

Letter from AFR, Eight Organizations Urging Congress not to Weaken Credit-Reporting Protections
November 17, 2014 – 10:06 am

AFR joined eight other organizations in sending a letter to members of Congress, urging that they reject HR 5446. The bill would exempt the big credit reporting agencies and debt collectors from coverage by the Credit Repair Organizations Act, which prohibits anyone offering credit repair services from engaging in fraud or deception. The exemption would make it easier for the companies to promote expensive and largely useless credit monitoring products.

CFPB Proposal on Prepaid Cards is an Important Step Forward
November 14, 2014 – 2:05 pm

With the new rules it proposed this week, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has moved to make the rapidly expanding world of prepaid and payroll cards a safer and more straightforward place.
The CFPB’S proposal …

AFR Opposes Weakening CFPB Supervision of Large Banks
November 13, 2014 – 9:50 am

AFR sent a letter to House and Senate members asking them to oppose S. 2732, the “Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Examination and Reporting Threshold Act of 2014.” This legislation would increase from $10 billion to $50 billion the asset threshold for “large banks” subject to supervision by the CFPB, dramatically reducing the number of large banks supervised by the CFPB threatening harm to the hundreds of millions of consumers who are beginning to benefit from effective oversight of these institutions.

Moving Toward a Wall Street Tax
November 12, 2014 – 6:20 pm

A Capitol Hill briefing with JARED BERNSTEIN, Senior Fellow, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities; former chief economist to the Vice President; SARAH ANDERSON, Global Economy Project Director, Institute for Policy Studies; DAVID HILLMAN, Director of Stamp Out Poverty and Founder of the Robin Hood Tax Campaign (UK); ANDREW HANAUER, Campaigns Director, Jubilee USA Network; HEATHER SLAVKIN CORZO, Director of the AFL-CIO Office of Investment; and ROBERT WEISSMAN, President of Public Citizen.

AFR in the News: Protecting Soldiers’ Finances a Growing Priority (CNBC)
November 12, 2014 – 6:11 pm

“The Military Lending Act [restricts] small-dollar, short-term lending practices, but lenders have found many ways around the law. The Defense Department has proposed beefing up the act… so that it applies to ‘all forms of payday loans, vehicle title loans, refund anticipation loans, deposit advance loans, installment loans, unsecured open-end lines of credit, and credit cards…’ A number of financial services industry associations believe the current proposal… takes the wrong approach… [But] the Consumer Federation of America, the National Consumer Law Center and Americans for Financial Reform all support the expansion.”