New AFR Report: Where They Stand on Financial Reform
March 26, 2014 – 5:40 pm | Comments Off

“Surveys show high levels of voter support for tougher rules; apart from the Senate’s confirmation of two notable regulatory officials, however, most of last year’s congressional votes on such matters were over efforts to reverse or water down reforms already enacted into law. And while some legislators resisted those efforts and continued to press for more industry accountability, many others – particularly in the House – threw their weight behind a series of proposals to weaken existing rules or to undermine the agencies charged with implementing them.”

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AFR Urges Federal Reserve to Act Against Bank Ownership of Commodities
April 16, 2014 – 10:44 am

“Americans for Financial Reform supports the separation of banking and commerce as a foundational principle, motivated both by considerations of preserving fairness in competition with non-bank firms who do not have access to the prudential safety net, and by considerations of financial safety and soundness.”

AFR, Consumer Groups Oppose Exempting Lawyers from Debt Collection Rules
April 15, 2014 – 2:23 pm

AFR joined ten organizations in sending a letter to members of Congress urging them to oppose HR 2892. If enacted, this legislation would bring changes to current law, exempting debt collection attorneys from the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”.) This would effectively permit lawyers and law firms engaging in debt collection to evade essential requirements of the FDCPA which prohibit deception, unfair activities, and harassment against consumers.

AFR in the News: SECURE Act Would Help You Clear up Credit-Reporting Errors
April 10, 2014 – 1:28 pm

“[T]wo U.S. senators have proposed a bill that would make it easier for people to learn about and challenge [credit report] errors, as well as increase the credit reporting industry’s accountability for mistakes that go uncorrected…,” Fox Business news reports. “The bill drew praise from consumer groups, including the Consumer Federation of American, the National Consumer Law Center, Americans for Financial Reform, and Consumers Union, the poliucy and advocacy arm of Consumer Reports.”

AFR Defends CFTC, Opposes “Customer Protection and End User Relief Act”
April 9, 2014 – 11:14 am

AFR sent a letter to members of Congress urging them to oppose “The Customer Protection and End User Relief Act.” This legislation would place significant new barriers in the way of effective oversight of commodities and derivatives markets crucial to our economy, barriers not faced by any other regulatory agency. The new statutory ‘cost benefit’ restrictions it places on CFTC rulemaking would enable financial industry interests to indefinitely delay and possibly overturn regulations, even where Congress has clearly directed the regulators to act, and where regulation is sorely needed to protect the public interest.

AFR in the News: Why Big Banks Have to Raise $68 Billion by 2018
April 9, 2014 – 10:05 am

“We don’t believe that this is enough,” Marcus Stanley of Americans for Financial Reform told the Washington Post. “Raising $60 billion in extra capital is helpful, but it’s really not in line with the kinds of risk we saw in the financial crisis.”

AFR in the News: CFTC’s Dodd-Frank Power Curtailed in Bipartisan Legislation
April 9, 2014 – 9:32 am

“’There are provisions in this bill that would effectively unwind a good deal of the work the CFTC has already done and make it much harder for them to regulate the derivatives markets,’ Marcus Stanley, policy director for Americans for Financial Reform, a coalition including the AFL-CIO labor federation, said in a phone interview.”

AFR Comments on CFPB Rule on Defining Larger Participants in the International Money Transfer Market
April 2, 2014 – 3:19 pm

AFR submitted a comment to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau offering some suggestions on how to strengthen their proposed rule on defining “larger participants” in the international money transfer market. This proposed rule, if adopted, would be the fourth in a series of rulemakings to define ‘larger participants’ in various consumer financial product markets. AFR’s recommendations include expanding the criteria CFPB uses to define larger participants, and covering domestic as well as international money transfers under their supervisory purview.

AFR Calls on SEC to Strengthen Rules Governing Credit Rating Agencies
April 1, 2014 – 2:09 pm

AFR, AFSCME, and the SEIU today sent the letter below to the Securities and Exchange Commission calling on the Commission to reproprose and strengthen its rules governing credit rating agencies. Conflicts of interest and deceptive practices at credit rating agencies were central to the 2008 financial crisis and continue to pose a threat to the economy today.