FROM Ben Protess
Wall Street regulation under Trump President Trump signed two more executive actions today to deregulate Wall Street — setting the table for dismantling Dodd Frank, the sweeping law passed after the financial crisis of 2008. He addressed business leaders today at the White House. “We expect to be cutting a lot out of Dodd-Frank because, frankly, I have so many people, friends of mine, who have nice businesses who can't borrow money. They just can't get any money because the banks just won't let them borrow The other action starts to eliminate the rule requiring financial advisors to act in their clients' best interest. Ben Protess, who covers the intersection of Wall Street and government for the New York Times , reports that those targeted by Dodd Frank are now on the front line to undue it.
DOJ Secures Another Billion Dollar Bank Settlement Another bank has agreed to pay big money to settle allegations over the sale of toxic mortgage-backed securities to investors. JP Morgan Chase came up with $13 billion; today it’s Citigroup with $7 billion. Attorney General Eric Holder says the bank concealed “serious defects” from its own investors. Ben Protess covers Wall Street and white-collar crime for the New York Times.
JP Morgan Chase to Pay $1.7 Billion in Madoff Case It's been five years since Bernard Madoff was arrested for running one of the largest Ponzi schemes in US history. Now his primary bank is finally facing its own punishment, of sorts. JP Morgan Chase will pay a $1.7 billion fine to settle criminal charges by federal prosecutors that it failed to alert authorities of Madoff's suspicious activities. Ben Protess is following the story for the New York Times .
JP Morgan Chase: A Record Penalty or a Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card? What does it take to get America's biggest bank to agree to what looks like the biggest civil penalty in American history? Four hours before the Justice Department was planning to announce civil charges against JP Morgan Chase, the CEO Jamie Dimon called an aide to Attorney General Eric Holder. After five direct phone calls and a personal meeting, Dimon and Holder worked out a deal. America's biggest bank agreed to the biggest civil penalty in American history for its role in the Great Recession: $13 billion. But critics say it's not what it seems. Pension funds, retirees with 401(k)'s and even bank shareholders may not see a penny. The government still has the option of criminal prosecution, but will the real masters of Wall Street fraud ever be held accountable?
Trump's ethical conflicts pile up as transparency diminishes President Trump's refusal to reveal his income tax returns is just one example of a lack of transparency that could be hiding conflicts of interest. Other conflicts are already obvious from his appointments. And he's being sued for using his job to increase his profits.
White House flip flops: NATO, Syria and China In less than 100 days, President Trump has contradicted himself on a host of foreign policy issues — Syria, NATO, China and Vladimir Putin’s Russia. Is it a strength — or a weakness — for the United States when the world of power politics never knows what to expect?