Monthly Archives: October 2017

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AFR in the News: Lawmakers Just Made It Nearly Impossible to Sue Companies Like Equifax and Wells Fargo (Money Magazine)

“‘This vote marks a truly shameful moment in Congress,’ [AFR’s] Amanda Werner, who plays the Monopoly Man, said in a statement. ‘Just weeks after holding hearings on scandals of historic proportion, the Senate granted Equifax and Wells Fargo a Get Out of Jail Free card. Rather than pass meaningful legislation to help the 145 million Americans harmed by the data breach, a slim Republican majority chose to take away our only chance at holding financial giants accountable.’”

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AFR in the News: Despite feud, Flake and Corker join Trump to upend a major consumer protection (Intercept)

“The {Wells Fargo and Equifax) scandals put a human face on the practice of companies forcing customer disputes through a secret, non-judicial process… Americans for Financial Reform addressed this directly in a video featuring a woman with disabilities and a veteran, who were ripped off by Wells Fargo and then prevented from a day in court because of an arbitration clause. To pursue such cases, which typically involve small amounts of money, through arbitration, victims need to spend heavily on legal representation and hearings. As federal Judge Richard Posner of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals once wrote in a ruling, ‘The realistic alternative to a class action is not 17 million individual suits, but zero individual suits, as only a lunatic or a fanatic sues for $30.’”

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AFR in the News: Ohio Must Reform Payday Lending (Canton Record-Courier)

“Oversight of payday loans is particularly lax in Ohio… State voters approved reforms in 2008, but the industry found ways around the restrictions on interest rates and other measures designed to protect borrowers… ‘Payday and car title lenders profit from repeatedly dragging hard-pressed people deeper and deeper into debt, and taking advantage of families when they are financially vulnerable,’ Lisa Donner, with Americans for Financial Reform, told the Associated Press. ‘Curbing the ability to push loans that borrowers clearly cannot repay is a key protection.'”

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AFR Report: The Same Old Song – Wall Street’s repeatedly discredited but endlessly repeated arguments against common-sense financial regulation

A look back at the financial lobby’s robotic opposition to one proposed reform after another, and how Wall Street’s claims have squared with real-world events. This new AFR report homes in on three pre-financial-crisis case studies, involving credit cards, mortgages, and derivatives.

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Letter to Regulator: AFR Opposes FDIC Insurance for Square Inc.

“ILC charters exploit a loophole in federal banking laws to gain access to the federal deposit-insurance safety net while avoiding critical federal supervision and regulation. ILCs therefore pose unique risks to the financial system… If these applications are granted, [it] will send a clear signal to the marketplace that the FDIC intends once again to approve ILC deposit insurance applications, potentially unleashing a dangerous avalanche of new applications.”