Receiving Wide Coverage ...
Fighting Over Fannie and Freddie: The Washington Post reports on the coalition of small investors, civil rights and business groups opposed to housing reform legislation, their well-funded ad blitz to "save" Fannie and Freddie, and the likely outcome of the current court battle challenging the government's seizure of the enterprises in 2008. The Wall Street Journal reports Fannie and Freddie "had another blockbuster quarter," earning a combined $10.2 billion, most of it from one-time legal settlements, which was turned over to the government under the terms of the 2008 bailout.
Barclays Retrenches: The Financial Times weighs in on Barclays' retreat from global banking with an astonishing five separate stories including an homage to UBS, which made similar deep cuts to its investment bank in 2012. The move to cut investment banking by half, shedding 7,000 jobs by 2016, is really a sign that traders have lost influence, the paper reports. The strategy comes amid a backdrop of increased regulations in the U.K. that apparently make it much harder to operate a global bank there than in Germany or the U.S. But the true test is still to come as Barclays takes a cue from Bank of America by creating a "bad bank" division to unload $195 billion of "noncore" problem assets it still hasn't identified. Such a "capital light" strategy has paid off for other European banks. Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
Before imposing stricter rules on nonbank financial firms, like BlackRock (BLK) and Fidelity Investments, regulators have to identify whether a failure of such firms would pose a risk to the financial system, Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen told a Senate panel.
New York Times
Dealbook analyzes Federal Reserve Board Governor Daniel K. Tarullo's effort to end banks' self-grading, whereby they are allowed to use their own tests to assess the riskiness of their assets and activities. Tarullo said in a speech Thursday that the internal ratings-based approach "has little useful role to play."
An "Op-Ed" by Peter Dreier, a professor of politics at Occidental College, analyzes obstacles to a national housing recovery.