Receiving Wide Coverage ...
Settled: Royal Bank of Scotland agreed to pay $5.5 billion to the Federal Housing Finance Agency to settle an investigation into its sale of toxic mortgage-backed securities prior to the financial crisis. “The settlement clears one of several obstacles the U.K. government-controlled bank faces before it can resume dividend payments and continue its return to private hands,” the Wall Street Journal says. But the bank still faces a penalty from the Department of Justice that could be more than twice as big. Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New York Times, American Banker
Wall Street Journal
No cash for you: Visa is offering up to 50 restaurants and food sellers $10,000 to upgrade their payments technology. There’s one catch: They have to agree to stop accepting cash. Consumers would be able to pay only with debit or credit cards or from their cellphones. The offer is part of an initiative Visa unveiled on Monday to start businesses on a “journey to cashless.”
Bowing out: James Clinger, President Trump’s pick to run the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., has withdrawn from consideration for the post. “The family-related obligations that prompted me to leave government service earlier this year — which have grown more challenging in the interim — are incompatible with the demands of leading an important federal agency like the FDIC,” Clinger said in a statement. American Banker looks at the implications for the agency.
Earnings season: The paper handicaps bank earnings season, which begins Friday.
Show me the money: The Federal Reserve has been raising interest rates, but retail bank deposits have yet to follow. How long will customers put up with that?
New JPM lobbyist: JPMorgan Chase has named Tim Berry, former chief of staff to two House majority leaders, as its head of government relations and public policy. Berry “will also focus on leveraging Chief Executive James Dimon’s leadership of the Business Roundtable,” the paper says.
German engineering: German auto manufacturer Daimler AG recently sold part of its €100 million ($114.1 million) bond issue using blockchain technology as part of a pilot project, which the firm said was among the first of its kind, according to the paper. Kurt Schäfer, head of treasury at Daimler AG, discusses the deal.
Bond battle: Pimco, the big bond house, is suing Wells Fargo for withholding money Pimco claims is owed to bond investors. Wells, the trustee for the bond issues, last month withheld $90 million from investors in residential mortgage-backed securities, saying the money should be kept aside to cover its legal expenses. Pimco accuses Wells of “unauthorized and unlawful looting of trust funds to pay attorneys’ fees and defense costs, and to indemnify itself against its own negligent and willful misconduct.” The dispute “could have implications for billions of dollars still locked up in U.S. mortgage securities created before the financial crisis,” the paper says.
Separately, Equiniti Group agreed to pay $227 million to buy Wells’ share registration unit. The deal is the “latest strategic move by Wells Fargo under recently appointed chief Tim Sloan, who is trying to get the group back on track after a scandal over fake accounts that rocked the banking industry.”
“We’re focused on putting cash out of business.” — Visa CEO Al Kelly.