Category Archives: Letters and Statements

Polling Memo: Voters Support Strong Consumer Financial Protections and Tough Regulation of Wall Street

Voters across all political parties are broadly and intensely supportive of strong consumer financial protections and of tough regulation of the financial services industry. This sentiment extends not only to keeping existing measures in place but expanding on what Congress did a decade ago, and has proved durable throughout the period since the 2008 financial crisis, through the weak recovery that followed and into the searing recession caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Letter to Regulator: FDIC Should Avoid Industry-Led Standard Setting Organization

As the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) reassesses third-party partnerships regarding financial technology (fintech), we urge it to refrain from delegating its responsibilities to a public-private standard-setting organization (SSO) and instead to develop its own expertise in the context of a robust, precautionary, approach to oversight. Facilitating compliance with SSO standards is not an acceptable means of regulation, nor an acceptable alternative to regulation.

photo of a student borrower looking sadly at the sky - Photo by Matese Fields on Unsplash

Statement: AFR Applauds Schumer, Warren Resolution Calling on Trump to Cancel Student Debt

We applaud Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Resolution calling on the Trump Administration to cancel student debt. Cancelling student debt will provide both immediate financial relief to millions of Americans, and crucial economic stimulus for everyone during this protracted crisis — boosting GDP and job creation at a time of intense labor shocks and economic contraction.

BLOG POST: How Private Equity Harms Workers

In many ways, the private equity industry embodies some of the worst impulses of Wall Street, squeezing profits at the expense of workers and consumers, and insulating bad actors from risks. But these abuses are not inevitable. On the contrary, they are the result of laws and regulations that can and should be changed.

In The News: Postal Banking: Brought to you by JP Morgan Chase? (Take On Wall Street)

Wall Street has consistently opposed the return of postal banking since its destruction in the 1960s. Chase and other nefarious actors are attempting to prevent competition before it even forms. The 2020 Democratic Party Platform and Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force recommendations both call for postal banking. But they also call on policymakers to separate retail banking institutions from more risky investments and protect consumers from high rates, onerous fees, inequitable credit reporting, and other harms.

News Release: Senate Pandemic Relief Bill Would Weaken Key Safeguard Against Financial Crisis

A provision inserted by Sen. Mike Crapo, chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, would encourage Trump-appointed regulators, who have already sought to reduce the minimum amounts of their own risk capital that banks have to hold during the COVID-19 pandemic, to go further. Sen. Susan Collins, sponsor of the part of Dodd-Frank in 2010 that Crapo wants to gut, has already filed an amendment that would strike the part of Republican bill that would make this change. The Senate should follow her lead and preserve minimum statutory thresholds for bank capital.

Letter to Regulator: Oppose Labor Department Retirement Advice Rulemaking Package

Together, these rules would put the retirement security of millions of American workers and retirees at risk by exposing them to conflicted retirement investment advice without adequate protections to limit the harmful impact of those conflicts of interest. We therefore urge you to withdraw the regulatory package in its entirety and to begin again on a rulemaking proposal that prioritizes protecting retirement savers from the toxic conflicts of interest that pervade the financial services industry.

News Release: Private equity-backed nursing homes do worse during pandemic for residents and staff

Private equity-owned and -backed nursing homes had higher COVID-19 infection and fatality rates for residents, and those same facilities had a disproportionate share of the COVID-19 resident and staff cases and deaths relative to public, non-profit, and other for-profit nursing homes in New Jersey, according to a new report from Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund (AFREF).