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Home | News | Government (page 3)

House Votes to Drastically Change CFPB

The Financial CHOICE Act, originally introduced on April 26, 2017 by Representative Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), Chairman of the House Financial Service Committee, passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday. The CHOICE Act is the Republican response to reforms put in place after the 2008 economic collapse. The bill significantly amends the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

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DOJ Policy Change Could Impact Crisis Suit Payouts

A memo from Attorney General Jeff Sessions has revealed a policy change at the U.S. Department of Justice: DOJ attorneys can no longer send settlement money to community groups or third-party vendors not directly harmed by the defendant in question. The practice had become common under the Obama administration, as prosecutors tacked on additional settlement costs to fund groups fighting community blight and serving other mortgage-related purposes across the nation. Critics of the practice called it a “slush fund” for promoting partisan political goals.

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Patenaude Has Nomination Hearing, Rumors of Otting’s Nomination Confirmed

Monday Pamela Patenaude appeared before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs for her nomination hearing for Deputy Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Patenaude believes her history as the Assistant Deputy will set her up well for this position, if confirmed. The rumors of the intent to nominate Joseph Otting for the Comptroller of the Currency were also confirmed recently in a statement from President Trump.

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GSEs: Where Should the Money Go?

For four months, the Department of the Treasury, GSEs, and Federal Housing Finance Agency have been in disagreement with Fannie and Freddie investors on where profits should be directed. Though the D.C. Circuit affirmed a lower court’s ruling that actions taken under the FHFA’s conservatorship of the GSEs cannot be challenged in court, the shareholders are now taking matters to the full D.C. Circuit for a rehearing. The FHFA and Treasury are now urging the D.C. Circuit not to modify its original ruling.

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CFPB Gets a Win in Ocwen Case

Ocwen Financial Corporation sued the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in late April claiming Ocwen had failed borrowers in every stage of the mortgage servicing process. Though the two went back and forth about getting the ruling on the CFPB’s constitutionality expedited, ultimately the request was denied. Ocwen's bid to test the constitutionality of the CFPB has now been delayed.

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Carson Speaks: Clarifies State of Mind Comments

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson, in an interview with NPR, has attempted to clarify last month’s controversial comment that “poverty is a state of mind.” Carson has received extensive criticism from housing advocates and the media for his comment in what has been deemed insensitive in light of proposed budget cuts to the Secretary’s department. Carson defended his position by stating that while he did say that the way a person thinks is a factor in getting out of poverty, he did not say it was the only factor, or that simply wishing away poverty was enough to get a person out of it.

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The Week Ahead: Reform to Dodd-Frank

The House will vote on the Financial CHOICE Act, a Dodd-Frank “off-ramp”, this coming Wednesday. Republicans proposed this reform to the financial system in mid-April to free the U.S. from government micromanagement when it comes to excessive regulations on the financial system. See what else will take place in the upcoming week here.

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Lehman’s Brothers Holdings: 2.4 Billion Bankruptcy Offer Accepted

Fourteen investors announced Friday that trustees accepted the settlement offer from the Plan Administrator for Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., a global financial services firm that declared bankruptcy in 2008. The announcement is said to be an important step in resolving the Lehman RMBS claims. The settlement will payout a minimum of $2.4 billion, subject to a judges approval.

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Less Directive to Bank Boards as the Fed Steps Back

On Thursday, Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell went on record saying the Fed plans on reviewing some of what he believes are the more outdated rules mandated by the Dodd-Frank act. Banks’ board of directors could see a relief of some of the day to day responsibilities and concentrate more on big picture if Powell is successful. Banks may also see more transparency in the CCAR, something a majority of the industry has been requesting for years.

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