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Inside Washington (06/19/2012)
  • WASHINGTON (6/20/12)—A 12-member Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) group brought the credit union message to Capitol Hill earlier this month. The group, which included credit union staff from Washington and Oregon, "got around the Hill efficiently and effectively as our meetings progressed," NWCUA Vice President of Legislative Advocacy Jennifer Wagner said. The Cascadian crew met with Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) staff, including NCUA Chairman Debbie Matz. During meetings with eight members of Congress, the group asked their legislators to support increasing the credit union member business lending cap and allowing credit unions greater authority to raise supplemental capital. The credit union representatives also sought congressional support for legislation that would change current ATM disclosure requirements. Capitol Hill hikes are scheduled from June until October, and the Missouri, Montana, Ohio and Texas leagues are scheduled to come to Washington next week…
  • WASHINGTON (6/20/12)—The Federal Housing Administration late last week rescinded a policy that would have harmed prospective mortgage borrowers with $1000 or more in disputed credit, or whose credit accounts were referred to a collections agency by their lenders (American Banker June 19). The FHA rule was scheduled to become effective on July 1 and would have required borrowers to pay their debts in full, or make at least three months' worth of payments, before they could qualify for an FHA mortgage loan. The FHA plans to revise the policy, FHA spokesman Lemar Wooley said…
  • WASHINGTON (6/20/12)—The Systemic Risk Council, a private sector, volunteer group led by former Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. chair Sheila Bair, held its first meeting on Monday (American Banker June 19). The group is tasked with monitoring and encouraging regulatory reform of U.S. capital markets, and will mainly focus on systemic risk. Bair on Monday said today's economy "arguably faces even greater potential problems than it did in the run-up to the subprime crisis," adding that now "is not the time for complacency." Council members added that the government is not effectively using the regulatory tools it was given by the Dodd-Frank Act. "Tools are only useful to the extent they are actively used, and used in the right way," Bair said. She said she is concerned that "little has been done to address systemic issues … throughout the financial system." Overall, many regulatory agencies suffer from insufficient leadership, Bair said. The Systemic Risk Council comprises experts in investments, capital markets and securities regulation, including senior adviser Paul Volcker, former chair of the Federal Reserve. Bair said the group would be "speaking out more publicly, having more meetings, knocking more heads" going forward…
  • WASHINGTON (6/20/12)—The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on Tuesday announced several staff changes, including the addition of former National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions President/CEO Clifford Rosenthal. Rosenthal, who led the Federation for more than 30 years, will serve as the CFPB's assistant director of financial empowerment. "As the CFPB continues moving forward with its important work, we are leveraging the collective expertise of our dedicated senior staff to better serve consumers and fulfill the CFPB's mission of making consumer financial markets more fair, transparent, and competitive," CFPB Director Richard Cordray said...

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