Receiving Wide Coverage ...
Out of step: Women working at Goldman Sachs’ U.K. unit make 36% less than men, according to a filing by the firm. The finding reflects “a dearth of women in the bank’s senior ranks” and “shows the financial industry is out of step with the broader economy,” the Wall Street Journal commented. “The numbers come at a time of intense focus on how women are treated at work.”
Meanwhile, Douglas D. Haynes, the president of billionaire Steven A. Cohen’s Point72 Asset Management firm, has resigned a month after a female employee sued the company over accusations that it underpaid women and encouraged a hostile work environment. Haynes is a defendant in the suit.
Wall Street Journal
The hits keep coming: The Justice Department and Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating the sales practices in Wells Fargo’s wealth management business. The investigation is an extension of the probe into the firm’s retail banking unit, where thousands of employees were fired for creating millions of fake accounts in order to meet sales quotas.
“The widening of the sales-practices investigation has occurred despite Wells Fargo’s attempts to put the problems behind it by restructuring different businesses, firing some executives and refunding customers,” the Wall Street Journal noted.
Ban lifted: The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency has lifted its ban that prevented ACE Cash Express from offering payday loans funded by nationally chartered banks. “The safe and sound operation of the banking system does not require the continued existence” of those restrictions, the OCC said. The agency added that ACE is now under the primary supervision of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which currently has an order against the company.
Outside looking in: The Journal’s editors find it rich that Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., who designed the CFPB “as an independent agency like no other precisely so it could ignore Congress,” now is demanding that acting director Mick Mulvaney “immediately testify under oath before my colleagues and me on the Senate Banking Committee.” On Friday Warren sent Mulvaney a 17-page letter asking him more than 100 questions.
“If Ms. Warren wants to put the CFPB on a proper constitutional footing, we’ll be happy to offer suggestions,” it says.
House rules: The paper's editors also support House Republicans in their bid to amend the Dodd-Frank rollback bill passed by the Senate last week with bipartisan support. “The impetus for Dodd-Frank reform originated in the House, and Members there deserve to shape the final product,” they say. “Senate Republicans should be as willing to accommodate their GOP colleagues as they are Democrats.”
New York Times
An editorial criticizes a new Education Department policy that says the federal government can preempt state laws reining in student loan servicers, saying it's an example of Secretary Betsy Devos' "eagerness to shill for... corporate interests."
Taking a breather: The Financial Stability Board, which makes recommendations on global financial rules to the G20 countries, said it will pause from making new regulations and instead examine the effects of the reforms it put in place after the financial crisis. “As its work to fix the fault lines that caused the financial crisis draws to a close, the FSB is increasingly pivoting away from design of new policy initiatives towards dynamic implementation and rigorous evaluation of the effects of the agreed G20 reforms,” Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England and FSB chair, wrote in a letter to G20 finance ministers and central bankers.
Got to be real: MasterCard said it would consider approving transactions involving cryptocurrencies provided they were issued by a central bank. “If governments look to create national digital currency we’d be very happy to look at those in a more favorable way” compared to bitcoin and other cybercurrencies, said Ari Sarker, co-president of Mastercard's Asia-Pacific business. “So long as it’s backed by a regulator and the value is not anonymous, it is meeting all the regulatory requirements, I think that would be of greater interest for us to explore.”
“This is the biggest story that investors and bankers are going to talk about for the next two years, after a period of eight or nine years of not even worrying about it.” — Gerard Cassidy, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets, about the prospect of banks finally having to raise interest rates on deposits.