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  • Financial Crisis Accountability on the Cards - 22 August 2013
  • The recently released results of the review of the 2008 financial crisis by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has revealed that federal and state insurance regulators helped to minimize the economic turmoil and maintain general stability in the market. The GAO found that, with a few exceptions, the effects of the 2008 financial crisis on policyholders and insurers were limited. A coalition of state regulators under the banner of the National Association of Insurance Commissions took action during the crisis by insisting on detailed reports from insurers, as well as altering reporting rules and criteria for determining the risk factor of securities.

  • Financial Sector No Longer Preferred Career Path for Graduates - 30 may 2013
  • As thousands of students attending college prepare to graduate, the Harvard Crimson reports that only 15% of Harvard graduates are planning to carve a career in finance, compared to the 47% who took jobs in finance in 2007, prior to the financial crisis of 2008. The decline of job opportunities on Wall Street over the past few years is likely a factor in this trend, but it appears that a large number of current job seekers are looking for job satisfaction rather than financial compensation.

  • July 2014 Compliance for Volcker Rule - 20 April 2012
  • Named for former United States Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, the Volcker Rule forms part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, designed to prevent banks in the US from making speculative investments that would not be in the best interests of their customers. The Dodd-Frank Act stipulated a 2014 compliance deadline, but some of the law's fine print relating to the Volcker Rule appeared open to interpretation, prompting bank officials to request clarification from financial regulators. The clarification came yesterday in the form of an announcement that Wall Street need not comply immediately with the Volcker Rule banning banks from trading with their own money.

  • Europe Crisis, Stagnant Job Market Plague Investors - 5 September 2011
  • Investors face a new week on Wall Street with Europe's financial crisis and non-existent job growth fuelling fears of a double-dip recession. While some analysts are of the opinion that the United States is likely to avoid a recession, even if only by a narrow margin, others feel that it is only a matter of time before the economy slips into recession territory. Last week’s report of zero job growth, among other factors, resulted in consumer confidence falling to its lowest level since August 2009. With consumers fearful of job losses, the majority of consumers are holding back on buying anything that is not considered to be an absolute necessity, which in turn hits retailers and consumer product suppliers as trade slows down, and the economy slows down with it.

  • NYSE Non-Compliance Notifications Issued - 25 August 2011
  • Wall Street investors are hopeful that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will provide some light at the end of the tunnel when he delivers his keynote speech at the annual Kansas City Federal Reserve retreat tomorrow, although analysts caution that expectations of further quantitative easing and other bailout-style measures are unlikely to be met. As double-dip fears continue, the ongoing woes in the US economy are impacting on stock market listed companies to the extent that many no longer meet the criteria for being listed on stock exchanges.

  • Vulture Investing – Cashing in on Disaster - 9 June 2011
  • Individual investors, or investment funds, who take advantage of the misfortune of others to buy up assets at drastically reduced prices are often referred to as 'vultures' with their activities branded as 'vulture investing', or being a 'vulture fund'. Although the comparison may seem unflattering, even vultures serve a constructive purpose, clearing away the debris of disaster. The financial crisis that started in 2008 has provided more than its fair share of opportunities for vulture investing, and the flood of housing foreclosures caught the attention of investors who never anticipated that the crisis would drag on for as long as it has, with no clear indication of ending any time soon.

  • Moral Hazard – Part 2 - 30 December 2010
  • While there are many reasons behind the current economic crisis, the term 'moral hazard' has been applied to risky decision making actions by lenders which led to the chaos in large financial institutions, referred to as the US subprime mortgage crisis, or the 2007-2010 financial crisis. It appears that the whole too-big-to-fail mindset may have resulted in extreme leniency when assessing the ability of borrowers to repay their loans – to the detriment of both lenders and borrowers. A number of financial giants took a tumble, with some being bailed out with government/taxpayers money and others being taken over by previous competitors, shifting at least part of the burden of bad decision making elsewhere.

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