Receiving Wide Coverage ...
Save Hamilton: Ben Bernanke has joined the growing chorus of those who say the Treasury should bump Andrew Jackson from his perch on the $20 to make way for the first woman on U.S. currency and leave Alexander Hamilton be on the $10. The former Fed chief writes on his blog that he's "appalled" by the plan to push aside Hamilton (who Bernanke calls "without doubt the best and most foresighted economic policymaker in U.S. history") instead of Jackson ("a man of many unattractive qualities and a poor president"). Bernanke also makes the point that Jackson, like GOP presidential candidate Rand Paul, is no fan of the Fed anyway. "Given his views on central banking, Jackson would probably be fine with having his image dropped from a Federal Reserve note," Bernanke wrote. New York Times, Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
BankNewport in Rhode Island is one of many community banks has decided to team up with online or marketplace lenders, despite the risks involved with handing over the keys to the kingdom. The mutual BankNewport lost virtually all of its business of making unsecured consumer loans years ago, and it sees a new partnership with Lending Club as a way to get back in the game. "We have to make sure we remain relevant," CEO Sandra Pattie said. The risks are numerousfrom handing over information on BankNewport's customers to a potential competitor, to losing the value of the BankNewport brand, to being the primary point of contact with the customer. An executive with the Credit Union National Association said he's advising his members to "tread lightly" with such partnerships. FIG Partners analyst Chris Marinac agreed with BankNewport's Pattie that the need to remain relevant probably outweighs all of the above concerns. In BankNewport's arrangement, Lending Club will make the loans, but the customers ostensibly will remain loyal to BankNewport for mortgages or small-business loans. BankNewport will also collect a small share of the 4% upfront fee that Lending Club collects. BancAlliance in Chevy Chase, Md., arranged the partnership between BankNewport and Lending Club and has been the matchmaker between other banks and marketplace lenders.
Banks' complaints about equity being expensive may be true. Lower-risk banks, in theory, should enjoy a lower cost of equity. But that hasn't been the case over the past 40 years, according to an American Economic Review paper. In fact, the process of making banks less risky may raise their cost of capital, the study's authors wrote. One reason is that some investors may prefer the riskier banks, making for a lower cost of equity for the riskier banks.
New York Times
A memorial service for JPMorgan Chase's Jimmy Lee was held on Monday at St. Patrick's Cathedral in Manhattan. "You were a nuclear power, a sun of positive energy, you had unbridled enthusiasm and optimism," JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said in delivering the first eulogy. "Your deal-making was legendary. You were simply a huge influence on the success of so many of us." Others in attendance included former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and television host Charlie Rose.
Business Insider: Summer interns at London banks are set to make a lot of money this year. Some said they're making about $1,600 per week. The banks shelling out the dough include Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, Credit Suisse and Barclays.
Sacramento Bee: The Sacramento Kings pro basketball team came very close to moving to Seattle a few years ago. Now California's capital city has a new arena under construction for its NBA franchise, and the team just secured a lucrative naming-rights deal for the arena with $9 billion-asset Golden 1 Credit Union, one of the largest credit unions in the U.S. Golden 1 is paying a reported $120 million over 20 years for the rights to call the facility the Golden 1 Center. As would be expected, bankers are not pleased.
Newark Star-Ledger: New Jersey banking commissioner Ken Kobylowski will step down in the next few weeks, with no reason given for his departure. Kobylowski has been commissioner since 2012. Gov. Chris Christie plans to nominate Richard Badolato, a lawyer in Roseland, N.J., to replace him.
And Lastly ...
That whole de-risking thing? Maybe it's not taking hold after all, at least with some banks. Then again, maybe it depends on who you ask. The International Monetary Fund and the Union of Arab Banks surveyed more than 100 banks about how they've been affected by anti-money laundering regulations, the Basel III implementation and compliance with the U.S. Foreign Account Tax compliance act. The survey found that "systematic wholesale de-risking by global banks does not appear to have taken place so far." And, "international remittances have been only marginally impacted by the enforcement" of anti-money laundering laws. The survey's authors admit the study is somewhat flawed, as they only surveyed banks in a limited geographic region and the response rate was less-than-adequate.