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Consumer Federation of America

Can Wall Street Kill a Fiduciary Rule?

Barbara Roper | Posted 04.03.2015 | Business
Barbara Roper

An explosive new blog post at AdvisorHub purports to quote a high-ranking Morgan Stanley executive deriding the notion that Wall Street would ever allow a real fiduciary standard to be applied to its business. The arrogant assumption that Wall Street runs Washington and the patent disregard for investor well-being give the alleged emails a convincing ring.

Rosy View of SEC Regulation at Odds With Reality

Barbara Roper | Posted 03.25.2015 | Business
Barbara Roper

In an increasingly frantic effort to derail new protections for retirement savers, SIFMA, the self-described "voice of the U.S. securities industry," has purchased yet another study that purports to show why a pending Department of Labor (DOL) proposal to require all financial advisors to put their customers first is unnecessary and inappropriate.

Industry to DOL: (Don't) Mind Your Own Business

Barbara Roper | Posted 02.24.2015 | Business
Barbara Roper

In addition to shedding crocodile tears over the potential harm to middle-income savers if brokers have to start acting in their customers' best interests, financial services firms and their lobbyists have increasingly voiced their outrage that the Department of Labor believes it has a role to play in regulating retirement advice.

Financial Firms Fight to Protect their Right to Profit at Customers' Expense

Barbara Roper | Posted 04.07.2015 | Business
Barbara Roper

Ever since the Department of Labor proposed several years ago to close regulatory loopholes that allow financial firms to offer conflicted retirement advice without having to act in the best interests of the retirement savers who rely on that advice, financial services firms have been nearly apoplectic in their opposition.

SEC Chair Mary Jo White's Upcoming Test

Micah Hauptman | Posted 10.18.2014 | Business
Micah Hauptman

The indications we've been given -- although no one is willing to state definitively what the final rule is likely to include -- suggest that we shouldn't get our hopes up that our chief concerns will be comprehensively or even meaningfully addressed. We hope we are reading those indications wrong.

Zach Carter

Warren Pushes Back On Insurance Deregulation

HuffingtonPost.com | Zach Carter | Posted 06.06.2013 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee on Thursday approved new bipartisan legislation to deregulate the insurance indu...

In a Tight Spot, SEC Chair White Puts Agency's Credibility on the Line

Barbara Roper | Posted 07.29.2013 | Business
Barbara Roper

Unfortunately for Chair White, her predecessors' mishandling of the JOBS Act rulemaking to lift the ban on general solicitation in private offerings has left her with an uncomfortable choice between speeding implementation of that rule and ignoring her commitment to follow the economic analysis guidelines.

Foodies With Worries

Liz Neumark | Posted 06.26.2013 | Green
Liz Neumark

How safe is our food? How does the FDA monitor domestic food products (as well as what comes into the U.S. food system from other countries?)

Will Congress Bully SEC into Ignoring JOBS Act Concerns?

Barbara Roper | Posted 06.22.2013 | Politics
Barbara Roper

There is a scandal here, but it is not the one House Republicans have seized on.

An Agenda to Make Sure Consumers are Heard

Chris Meyer | Posted 05.19.2013 | Politics
Chris Meyer

Eight of the nation's leading consumer groups are calling on President Obama and Congress to give consumers a greater voice in Washington.

JOBS Act Rule Poses Early Test of SEC Chairman Walter's Leadership

Barbara Roper | Posted 03.04.2013 | Politics
Barbara Roper

She now has an opportunity to show that she also has the strength of character to lead this often-fractious agency in these difficult and challenging times. Nothing less than the safety and integrity of our capital markets depend on the choices she makes.

Groups Threaten To Sue SEC Because 'Business Is Business'

Reuters | Posted 12.09.2012 | Business

* Advocates, state regulators say plan is fatally flawed * Some say they won't rule out suing SEC if changes not made ...

U.S. Not Meeting Its Goals On Foodborne Illnesses

Posted 07.31.2012 | Home

With the constant news reports about various food safety breaches, it's not really a surprise that the U.S. is falling short of 2010 goals to reduce i...

Two-Fifths Of Families Live On The Edge

The Huffington Post | Khadeeja Safdar | Posted 07.25.2012 | Money

Nearly two-fifths of American households are living on the edge financially. According to a report from the Consumer Federation of America and the ...

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowd (Funding)

Barbara Roper | Posted 05.06.2012 | Business
Barbara Roper

Although the bills making up the JOBS Act are typically described as "non-controversial," they have been severely criticized by leading securities law experts and are opposed by investor advocates and unions, among others.

Americans Got A Little Bit Less Angry At Banks Last Year

Reuters | Posted 05.01.2012 | Business

* Complaints against banks drop 30 pct-BBB * Payday lender complaints rise * Banks facing new restrictions on consumer p...

SIFMA Hypocritically Protests CFTC User Fee Plan

Barbara Roper | Posted 04.23.2012 | Business
Barbara Roper

I'm left to wonder, what is the source of SIFMA's sudden cost-consciousness? Because I don't seem to recall ever having heard the association express similar alarm over the costs to investors of the $20 billion or so Wall Street manages to scrape together for bonuses each year.

CFTC's Message to Municipalities: Caveat Emptor

Barbara Roper | Posted 03.27.2012 | Business
Barbara Roper

In a little noticed vote, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission reversed course last week on a rule that had the potential to save cities and school districts across the country billions in excess costs on the swaps they purchase to hedge their interest rate and other risks.

A Determined Dog Goes After Insurers Again to Save Consumers Billions

Wendell Potter | Posted 01.14.2012 | Politics
Wendell Potter

If there is one organization that insurers despise and fear more than any other, it surely must be Consumer Watchdog.

Zach Carter

Senators Back Delay In Crackdown On Fees That Yield Billions For Banks

HuffingtonPost.com | Zach Carter | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics

WASHINGTON -- On Tuesday, a group of nine senators led by Montana Democrat Jon Tester put their names behind legislation to delay the Federal Reserve'...

Ryan Grim

Elizabeth Warren: Consumer Bureau Must Fight For Survival

HuffingtonPost.com | Ryan Grim | Posted 05.25.2011 | Business

WASHINGTON - Elizabeth Warren pressed consumer advocates to fight on behalf of the newly created consumer protection bureaus she's heading up, warning...

In The Public Interest : Food Safety Delays Make Us Sick

Elizabeth Hitchcock | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Elizabeth Hitchcock

Last week, I met an extraordinary eighth grader from Henderson, Nevada. Rylee Gustafson may be only 13 years old, but she got excused from school to...

The Missing Mandate: Financial Literacy

Brooke Stephens | Posted 05.25.2011 | Business
Brooke Stephens

The kindergarten constituency can't vote, pay taxes or hire a lobbyist, but they will inherit the current debt. We should arm them with some tools to cope with that impending problem.

Top Ten Consumer Complaints: Consumer Federation of America

24/7 Wall St. | Posted 05.25.2011 | Business

The Consumer Federation of America has come out with its list of the top ten complaints for 2009 based on a survey conducted with the National Associ...

The Payday Industry's Powerful Friend

Gary Rivlin | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Gary Rivlin

The country's payday lenders and check cashers gave more in campaign donations to Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) than any other Republican in Congress.