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Inside Washington (06/08/2009)
* WASHINGTON (6/9/09)--Under a new Obama administration proposal, banks that have received two rounds of bailout money from the federal government would be required to submit any significant executive pay changes for approval (The New York Times June 8). The proposal is part of wider regulations on executive pay that the White House could announce this week. General Motors’ financing arm, GMAC; Bank of America; Citigroup; and the American International Group are expected to face the toughest scrutiny. Kenneth R. Feinberg--known for overseeing payouts to those who lost family members to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks--will be in charge of monitoring the executive pay. On Thursday, the House Financial Services Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing about how compensation practices have contributed to the nation’s financial trouble. On June 18, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is expected to testify on compensation ... * WASHINGTON (6/9/09)--Sonia Sotomayor, President Barack Obama’s pick for appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court, has significant experience with business and financial issues in court, but it’s not clear whether she would lean toward banking industry interests (American Banker June 5). Sotomayor has had 11 years of experience on the appeals court with business-related cases. If confirmed, she would be the only Second Circuit veteran. Sotomayor’s background includes a 2001 case where she upheld a lower court’s ruling in an antitrust suit involving MasterCard and Visa. Her decision allowed retailers to sue the card companies for bundling interchange fees on credit and debit cards, which the merchants argued monopolized the debit card market. Visa and MasterCard argued that the suit should not have been a class action. After Sotomayor rejected Visa and MasterCard’s arguments, more retailers joined the suit, increasing the two card companies’ payout ... * WASHINGTON (6/9/09)--The White House has announced that Jim Leach, one of the three authors of the 1999 Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, will be nominated for chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities (American Banker June 8). Leach, who lost the election for his Iowa congressional seat two years ago, has worked as a professor at Princeton and interim director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University ...

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