The Federal Reserve has announced the results of its 2021 bank stress tests. Since then, these results have led a steady parade of the largest banks in the country to announce dramatic increases in dividends. The stress tests will also enable greater share buybacks and other capital distributions by banks. This will enrich senior executives and large shareholders, while putting financial stability at risk.
Letter to the Administration: Letter Calling for Faster Pace in Appointing Financial Regulatory Positions
AFR sent a letter urging the Biden Administration to take a faster pace in filling key regulatory and financial policy positions. The letter calls out how the Administration’s slow pace in these appointments has undermined its racial justice and climate change agendas.
Letter to Regulators: The Fed must recognize its own regulatory failures and take action in the wake of Archegos
Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund wrote the Fed to express concerns over the blow-up of the Archegos family fund. This incident reveals both the dangers of excessive leverage at private funds, and the failure of banking regulators, including the Federal Reserve, to properly regulate bank interactions with such funds. To address these issues, the Federal Reserve must investigate its own regulatory failures in this case and publicly disclose the lessons learned from this investigation, and must also work with the Financial Stability Oversight Council to address the risks of excessive leverage at private funds.
Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund joined 64 groups in writing a letter to Federal Reserve Chair Powell to take bold and timely action on climate change, in line with the US commitment to the Paris Agreement. The letter asks him to use the Fed’s
Letters to Regulators: AFR Ed Fund Supports SEC Move to Reform Treasury Markets; Calls for More Action
AFR Education Fund sent a comment to the SEC supporting the proposed elimination of regulatory exemptions in government securities markets. The letter also calls for the SEC to make further reforms in fixed income markets.
The Biden Administration today issued an Executive Order initiating an ambitious government-wide effort to tackle the climate crisis. Just one week into his term, President Biden has already re-entered the U.S. into the Paris Agreement and appointed strong climate leaders. What we need next from the Administration is a more detailed plan for how our federal financial regulators should engage in this effort. Financial regulation and supervision are pivotal tools the Biden Administration can use to help address the climate crisis in an equitable way.
Yesterday, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission adopted a final rule that purports to limit excessive speculation in crucial commodity markets affecting the price of consumer products ranging from gasoline to bread.
The private equity industry, seeing a window of opportunity following the onset of the pandemic, has taken it upon itself to have the companies that it owns issue at least $10 billion in debt solely for the purpose of paying itself. This is yet another example of private equity looting.
Ten years after Congress passed a major reform of Wall Street in response to the financial crisis voters overwhelmingly support more and tougher regulation of finance and they strongly approve of the mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. And, as the decade after the 2008 crisis unfolded to reveal continuing abuses by Wall Street, and the growth of predatory financial practices, notably by private equity, the public’s appetite for additional reform has strengthened. And the results underscore the need for rigorous oversight to ensure consumers aren’t victimized by unscrupulous lending practices.
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.