Category Archives: Letters and Statements

Statement: AFR Mourns Passing of Civil Rights Legend John Lewis

AFR joins the Civil Rights Movement and the nation in mourning the passing of John Lewis. We celebrate his leadership, his outsized contributions to the struggle for racial and economic justice – until the very end of his life – and his steadfastness in demanding and defending a more robust democracy. His work as a legislator with a strong moral compass advanced all these strands of work and highlighted the relationship between them all.

a student with books - Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Joint Statement: 103 Organizations Agree – Congress Needs to Cancel Student Debt

Today, 103 civil rights, consumer and advocacy organizations and think tanks sent a joint letter to House and Senate leadership, urging them to include student debt cancellation in the next economic stimulus package.

Led by American for Financial Reform, Demos, Center for Responsible Lending and Freedom to Prosper, the letter stresses the ways that if left unaddressed, the student debt trap will deepen our current recession, slow our economic recovery, exacerbate inequality, and deepen a crisis already facing black and brown borrowers and families.

News Release: Improve Fed Facility to Help States and Municipalities Handle Coronavirus Crisis

States and localities provide critical public services, and more than 1.5 million state and local jobs have been lost since February. Without credit support like that which should be provided by this Facility, deeper job losses and service cuts can be expected as states grapple with unprecedented fiscal challenges in the face of the coronavirus crisis. Supporting states and localities is critical for economic recovery and for assisting communities impacted by the dual public health and economic crisis we face.

eagle statue outside a federal reserve bank

Statement: AFR on the Fed’s “Broad Market Index” for the Secondary Market Corporate Credit Facility

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York announced the initial composition of the index they will be using to purchase corporate bonds through its Secondary Market Corporate Credit Facility (SMCCF). The corporations included in their June 5 “Broad Market Index” raise serious concerns about public benefit, solvency, and further incentivizing companies to take on additional debt unnecessarily.

FACT SHEET: Banking on Surveillance: The Libra Black Paper

Because Faceboook’s active-user network alone represents more than a third of the global population, its ambitions raise the spectre of systemic risk not only in the United States, but across jurisdictional lines. Indeed, a global stablecoin system like the Libra project could pose especially substantial risks to certain developing economies, where Libra Coins could functionally replace the local currency.

News Release: SEC Must Go Further to Improve Pandemic-Related Risk Disclosures

The SEC has released new guidance on corporate disclosures in light of COVID, which  includes a recommendation that companies disclose more information about health and safety policies.  We see this as a positive first step toward requiring the disclosures requested in a letter sent to the SEC last week by Americans for Financial Reform and nearly 100 other organizations.

Wall Street sign and a stoplight turned red - Photo by Roberto Júnior on Unsplash

Statement: SEC Exams Show Private Fund Managers Overcharge Investors

The problems the SEC identified include fund managers’ failure to make full and fair disclosure of conflicts of interest, charging improper fees, and failure to implement policies to prevent staff from trading on material non-public information. In other words, the SEC’s examinations have shown that private equity and hedge fund managers are consistently engaged in self-dealing and overcharging investors, like pension funds that provide for the retirement security of millions of Americans.