April 12, 2019

U.S. lawmakers grill bank CEOs on social issues

Source: Reuters

By Imani Moise, Elizabeth Dilts

CEOs from JPMorgan Chase & Co, Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc, Goldman Sachs Group Inc, Morgan Stanley, State Street Corp and Bank of New York Mellon Corp walked into the hearing room ready to argue Wall Street has reformed the practices that fueled the 2007-2009 crisis and stress the contribution banks make to the broader economy.

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April 12, 2019

Big banks defend policies on gun manufacturers to Congress

Source: UPI

By Danielle Haynes

April 10 (UPI) — Big banks defended their policies to lend — or not lend — to gun manufacturers during testimony Wednesday before the House financial services committee.

Democrats on the panel praised the leaders of Bank of America and Citigroup — two of seven in attendance — for their decisions to stop loaning money to gun makers after a teenager used an assault-style rifle to kill 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan told lawmakers his bank made the move because some 100 company employees had been present in multiple mass shootings in recent years.

“These are based on us taking a look at what the right thing [is] for our teammates and the communities we serve,” he said.

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April 12, 2019

How’d You Feel If Your Boss Made $486 For Every Dollar You Make?

Source: NPR

By Jim Zarroli

The heads of some of the nation’s biggest banks faced tough questions from Democrats on Wednesday about overdraft fees, the stability of the banking system and their own multimillion-dollar compensation.

The House Financial Services Committee hearing was titled, “Holding Megabanks Accountable: A Review of Global Systemically Important Banks 10 years after the Financial Crisis.”

“Ten years ago, the CEOs appeared before this very committee to discuss the financial crisis and the massive bailout taxpayers provided,” said committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters, D-Calif. “A decade later, what have they learned? Are they helping their customers and working to benefit the communities they serve? Or are the practices of these banks still causing harm?”

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April 12, 2019

Booker, Maloney re-introduce bill to safeguard patient access to birth control

Source: NJ Biz

By Anthony Vecchione

U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-NJ,  and U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, D-NY,  re-introduced the Access to Birth Control Act on Tuesday, a bill that would guarantee patients’ timely access to birth control at the pharmacy.

In a press release, Booker’s office said that contraception is an essential part of reproductive health care and patients who need this care should be able to access it in a timely manner.

However, according to Booker, there have been reports of pharmacies in at least 25 states that have refused to dispense contraception to patients. The Access to Birth Control Act would ensure that pharmacies provide a contraceptive or a medication related to a contraceptive to a patient without delay, or assist the patient in accessing their medication elsewhere if it is out of stock.

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April 12, 2019

DealBook Briefing: Yes, the Economy Is Slowing. But Don’t Hyperventilate.

Source: The New York Times

White House weighs in on Trump’s tax returns
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told House lawmakers yesterday that his department had discussed the potential release of President Trump’s tax returns with White House lawyers.

It was the first public acknowledgment that such discussions have taken place. Mr. Mnuchin, whose department oversees the I.R.S., will have a role in deciding whether to honor Democrats’ request for the president’s tax returns.

The Treasury secretary said that he hadn’t personally spoken with anyone from the White House, and that the discussions so far had been “informational.” He added that he had not been briefed on the talks otherwise.

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April 12, 2019

Mnuchin: Treasury lawyers consulted White House on Trump tax returns

Source: UPI

By Daniel Uria

April 9 (UPI) — Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin testified Tuesday that lawyers from the agency consulted with, but did not take orders from the White House regarding the release of President Donald Trump’s tax returns.

Mnuchin revealed the conversations during a hearing before a House appropriations subcommittee saying members from his team spoke to the White House about releasing the tax returns, but he was not personally involved nor was he ever briefed on the content of the conversations.

“I believe that the communication between our legal department and the White House general counsel was informational,” he said. “We had obviously read in the press that we were expecting this.”

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April 12, 2019

‘You’re ordering me to stay’: Mnuchin threatens to not return before Congress after grilling on Trump’s tax returns

Source: USA Today

By Christal Hayes

WASHINGTON – During a testy day on Capitol Hill, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was confronted with a barrage of questions pertaining to President Donald Trump’s tax returns, whether his department would comply with a congressional request for the documents and threatened to never voluntarily appear before members of Congress again.

Mnuchin, who appeared before Congress for two separate hearings on Tuesday, said while he had not spoken with the White House about the request from House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., for six years worth of Trump’s tax returns, the Treasury Department’s legal team has had conversations with the White House about the returns.

“Our legal department has had conversations prior to receiving the letter with the White House general counsel,” Mnuchin said. “I acknowledge there were conversations. I am not briefed on the full extent of those conversations.”

He added that the conversations were “informational” and he was not part of them.

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April 12, 2019

Moore ‘superbly underqualified’ for Fed, vice chair of joint congressional committee says

Source: Reuters

By Ann Saphir

(Reuters) – Stephen Moore, the economic commentator whom President Donald Trump plans to nominate to the Federal Reserve Board, lacks the expertise and political independence needed to help set interest rates for the U.S. economy, a top Congressional Democrat said on Tuesday.

“Mr. Moore is superbly underqualified for the role for which he has been nominated,” Representative Carolyn Maloney, vice chair of the Joint Economic Committee, wrote in a letter to Republican Senator Mike Crapo and Democratic Senator Sherrod Brown, the chair and vice chair, respectively, of the Senate banking committee.

Maloney cited Moore’s “out of the mainstream views,” including support for the gold standard, and “his record of partisan statements that casts doubt on his ability to serve independently as a member of the central bank.” Moore “in no way” fits the description of a data-driven policy expert whom Maloney said is needed at the Fed to guide the economy.

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April 12, 2019

Chuck Schumer says Stephen Moore, Herman Cain would not be good fit for Fed’s mission

Source: CNBC

By Jessica Bursztynsky

Sen. Chuck Schumer told reporters Tuesday that he did not think Stephen Moore or Hermain Cain are qualified for seats on the Federal Reserve board.

The two men are Trump’s picks to join the U.S. central bank. But Schumer, the top Democrat in the Senate, said he doesn’t see Cain and Moore “fitting in with the mission of the Fed, which is to conduct monetary policy and not be political.”

Trump nominated Cain, a former presidential candidate and pizza CEO, in early April and Moore, an economic commentator, in late March to the seven-member board. A top congressional Democrat echoed Schumer’s sentiments earlier Tuesday.

“Mr. Moore is superbly underqualified for the role for which he has been nominated,” wrote Rep. Carolyn Maloney, vice chair of the Joint Economic Committee, in a letter to Republican Sen. Mike Crapo and Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, the chair and vice chair, respectively, of the Senate banking committee.

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