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Inside Washington (04/30/2008)
* WASHINGTON (5/1/08)--Financial institutions will be able to file notices, applications, and other materials to the Federal Reserve Board through an electronic system expected to be in place by the year’s end (American Banker April 30). The system is voluntary and would be available in the second quarter of 2008, with 20 participants. The Fed expects the system to be finalized during the fourth quarter and could be implemented next year ... * WASHINGTON (5/1/08)--The Federal Reserve Board’s efforts to curb abusive and deceptive credit card practices are not enough to protect consumers, Democrats said Tuesday. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) both issued statements on their websites reacting to the Fed’s proposed rules to curb double-cycle billing and universal default. “We can’t wait to act,” Maloney said in her statement. “It’s nice that the Fed has finally decided that something needs to be done,” but “by the time the Fed gets around to finalizing these credit card proposals, they will likely be watered down and come too little too late for consumers who need relief now,” she said. Maloney is the creator of the Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights. Menendez, who authored the Credit Card Reform Act, expressed his frustrations that federal regulators “never seem to be ahead of the curve and instead wait until the verge of a crisis or the onset of a crisis to take action.” The Fed plans to release its credit card proposal Friday ... * WASHINGTON (5/1/08)--Economic stimulus payments directly deposited into Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and other tax-favored accounts may be withdrawn tax- and penalty-free, the Internal Revenue Service announced yesterday. The relief aims to help taxpayers who may not have known that by choosing direct deposit for their regular tax refund, they also were choosing to have their stimulus payment direct deposited. To qualify, funds must be taken out by April 15 ...


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