Too popular to last dept.: “The Commodities Futures Trading Commission is reportedly ‘seriously’ exploring whether volatile cyber currency Bitcoin may fall under the U.S. regulator’s purview.” [Matt Egan, Fox Business]
Wait till you see how the market reacts, advises Marc Hodak [Hodak Value]
“Finally, a senior banking regulator has acknowledged the so-called repeal of Glass-Steagall had nothing to do with the 2008 financial crisis.” [Louise Bennetts, Cato at Liberty]
Maryland Reporter on what an Eastern Shore banker told a forum arranged by the state’s tax authorities:
The CEO of Easton Bank and Trust, Mike Menzies, said the new standardized approach in how the banks count assets along with state regulation policies have a distinct impact on the loans they can lend to small businesses….
Menzies said that regulations associated with the federal Credit Card Card Act, the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act and Dodd-Frank Act have have placed large burdens on banks, forcing them to devote more human resources toward regulatory compliance than is necessary.
“I would say that seven years ago, I would spend 20 to 25% of my time as CEO of a small company dealing with regulatory issues,” said Menzies. “I spend no less than 50 or 60 percent of my time today dealing with regulatory issues. It’s unbelievable.”
A recruitment ad for the newly established Consumer Financial Protection Bureau seeks investigators qualified to “establish and conduct surveillance activity to develop both intelligence and evidence to further investigations,” for matters that include “delicate matters, issues and investigative problems for which there are few, if any, established criteria.” Among the job duties: retain and oversee private investigators who might pose as consumers of financial services.
A similar plan at the Department of Health and Human Services was scrapped last year after some members of Congress complained that it amounted to spying. Health officials wanted to send “mystery shoppers” into doctors’ offices to gauge Medicaid and Medicare patients’ access to primary care physicians.
The agency says it intends to operate in accord with law and respect individuals’ privacy rights. [Washington Times via Kevin Funnell]
Thanks to new federal banking and mortgage guidelines with $1-million-a-day penalties for noncompliance, banks are scrambling to fire any employee who has previously been convicted of a crime involving dishonesty. Among those tossed out: a bank employee with seven years’ service who used a slug in a washing machine in 1963, and a 58-year-old customer service representative with a shoplifting conviction forty years ago. A lawyer says thousands of employees have been fired under the new rules. [Des Moines Register/USA Today via ABA Journal]