Category Archives: In the News

In The News: Court Loss Leaves SEC With Tough Choices in Private-Equity Reform Push (WSJ)

“The Fifth Circuit has once again sided with Wall Street and its private-equity billionaires to block reasonable protections for both the public interest and workers saving for retirement,” said Andrew Park, a senior policy analyst at Americans for Financial Reform, which advocates for tighter controls in the financial sector. “The Supreme Court needs to reverse this outrageous decision.”

In The News: House crypto bill sows the seeds of the next financial crisis (The Hill)

The bill’s worst feature rewrites longstanding securities law for crypto’s benefit by exempting a large set of crypto products from the definition of “security” in the SEC’s authorizing law, even though many crypto products clearly are securities and should be regulated as such. This loophole would erode key protections for crypto buyers and create a roadmap for traditional Wall Street firms to evade existing rules, which could further fuel risky speculation and harm a wider array of investors, even if they never touch crypto.

In The News: Supreme Court rebuffs challenge to consumer protection agency (NBC)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., who proposed that the bureau be created and helped set it up, welcomed the decision in a celebratory appearance outside the Supreme Court building… Consumer advocates and financial services industry critics expressed relief about Thursday’s ruling. “This decision removes a major threat to the agency’s work and reaffirms the independence that allows it to continue standing up for the public interest against abusive financial practices,” said Lisa Donner, executive director of Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund.

In The News: Commentary: Crisis at Steward Health highlights private equity’s threat to healthcare (The Dorchester Reporter)

“Steward is a prime example of private equity’s business model of extracting short-term profits from entities before selling them off,” said Robert Seifert, senior fellow at Americans for Financial Reform. “In the case of health care, this can leave critical service providers worse off financially, with more money going to Wall Street and less toward long-term viability, hospital staffing, and patient care,” he added.

In The News: The Capital One-Discover deal raises thorny issues for Washington (American Banker)

“Today’s concentrated markets and behemoth banking organizations are the result of a thirty-year run of mergers and consolidation,” said Patrick Woodall, senior fellow at the Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund. “It is time for the banking regulators to stop rubber-stamping these transactions and stand up for consumers, communities, and a more stable financial system by blocking this takeover.”

In The News: Banks Fine-Tune Critiques of US Capital Plan to Sway Fed’s Michael Barr (Bloomberg)

Banks are spending “vast lobbying dollars to cloak themselves in the mantle of preserving access to credit,” [AFR] said. “But the truth that the banks avoid debating is that the overwhelming impact of higher bank capital is — by design — to restrict how risky and how big the more speculative aspects of their business, notably their trading and investment bank operations, can grow.”