Lawmakers are rolling up their sleeves this week with hearings in the House Financial Services and Senate Banking committees designed to dig into the details of the adminstration´s rescue projects. On Wednesday, Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., will hear testimony on loan modifications from Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase executives, as well as representatives from the securities industry.
Tom Deutsch, the deputy executive director of the American Securitization Forum, and Benjamin Allensworth, the Managed Funds Association´s senior legal counsel, are expected to focus on the technical difficulties securitization contracts pose for loan modifications.
Thursday, Senate Banking holds a hearing on how recipients of the Treasury´s capital purchase program funds are using the money. A witness list is not out yet. At a similar hearing late last month, which was more heavily attended by the committee´s Democratic members than its Republicans, a consensus emerged that Treasury should stop banks from "hoarding" government funds.
Saturday, the leaders of 19 countries-Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States-as well as the head of the European Council will meet in Washington to discuss the financial crisis. Questions about the substance and relevance of the G-20 meeting have multiplied (subscription required), and the direction of the leaders´ discussions is still anybody´s guess-if the communiqué from last weekend´s annual finance ministers meeting in Brazil is any indicator, it will probably stick to generalities.