Category Archives: Financial Markets and Institutions

Deterring Financial Crime with the Bank Secrecy Act

Money laundering, terrorist financing, and other illicit activities pose threats to national security and the integrity of the U.S. financial system. The Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) requires financial institutions—such as banks and money transmitters—to verify customers’ identities and report suspicious … Continue reading

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The Decentralized Structure of the Federal Reserve System

This week, a key component of the Federal Reserve System—the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC)—will meet to review U.S. economic and financial conditions and determine monetary policy. In today’s WatchBlog, we explore how the Federal Reserve System is structured and … Continue reading

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Bank Supervision: What’s Changed Since the Financial Crisis

When big banks failed during the 2007–2009 financial crisis, it wasn’t a complete surprise. Federal bank supervisors had found underlying risks at those banks, but didn’t always act on those findings to help banks be better actors. Today’s WatchBlog looks … Continue reading

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Finding Common Ground on Flood Insurance Reform

As we enter the peak of hurricane season, many homeowners have wisely chosen to protect their properties by purchasing flood insurance. However, the nation’s taxpayers remain largely unprotected as the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is poised to continue to … Continue reading

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Increased Federal Role in the Housing Finance System

Housing finance is a complex, multi-trillion-dollar industry that played a major role in the 2007-2009 financial crisis. Two of our recent reports analyzed changes in the market since the crisis and their effect on taxpayers. We discuss our findings in … Continue reading

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Spring Podcast Roundup – Podcasts You May Have Missed

It has been a busy year so far in our podcast studio! And if you’re not subscribed to the Watchdog report on iTunes or our RSS feed, you’re missing out. Today’s WatchBlog catches you up on some of the podcasts … Continue reading

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Credit Reporting Agencies and You

If you’ve ever signed up for a credit card or taken out a loan to buy a car, the credit card company or bank has probably checked your credit report to see if you qualify. But where does the information … Continue reading

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Big bank regulators at risk of influence?

“Regulatory capture”—when regulators act in the interest of the industry they’re regulating, rather than the public good—is a big concern, especially when it comes to big banks. Today’s WatchBlog explores how it happens and what regulators can do to protect … Continue reading

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The Legacy of the Recovery Act

Ten years ago this month, Congress responded to the most serious economic crisis since the Great Depression by passing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act). This economic stimulus package, estimated to cost more than $800 billion, … Continue reading

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Risks and Benefits of Fintech Lending

Financial technology (fintech) refers to the use of technology and innovation to provide financial products and services—and fintech lending is a growing part of this field. Fintech lenders are nonbank firms that operate online and may use “alternative data,” including … Continue reading

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