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Brazil central bank intervenes in FX, sells $1 bln as real slides


Bloomberg

Wall Street Set to Learn How Tough Biden’s Watchdogs Will Be

(Bloomberg) — President Joe Biden’s plans for a new era of tough Wall Street oversight will take center stage this week when two of his top regulator picks face questions from Senate Banking Committee members at a Tuesday hearing.Gary Gensler, whom the White House has tapped to head the Securities and Exchange Commission, and Rohit Chopra, the administration’s choice to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, are likely to win confirmation, lawmakers and financial executives say. Yet their strong support from progressive Democrats means they’re certain to get pointed questions from Republican senators about their plans to crack down on businesses.The wild rally in GameStop Corp., the explosion of blank-check companies and apps — like Robinhood Markets’ platform — that have prompted millions of novice investors to start trading are sure to be focuses. The biggest banks, hedge funds and private equity firms are also likely to be spotlighted, particularly after four years of rule cutting under former President Donald Trump.Gensler, 63, is well known on Wall Street after leading the Commodity Futures Trading Commission during the Obama administration and making a fortune decades earlier at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Chopra, a 39-year-old Federal Trade Commission member who helped Senator Elizabeth Warren set up the CFPB, would run an agency that Democrats want reinvigorated to protect consumers from abuses involving credit cards, mortgages and high-interest loans. Republicans would prefer it remain in the slumber that defined the bureau in the Trump era.“There remains a sharp divide between Republicans and Democrats on the role of the CFPB in financial regulation,” said Andrew Olmem, National Economic Council deputy director in the Trump administration who is now a partner at the Mayer Brown law firm. “This is a very important nomination because a new director can significantly shift the direction of the CFPB.”Gensler, who has been been teaching at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, indicated in his prepared testimony that he planned to examine whether SEC rules have kept pace with advancements in technology. “I believe financial technology can be a powerful force for good — but only if we continue to harness the core values of the SEC in service of investors, issuers, and the public,” he said.Chopra signaled he would focus on the economic impact of coronavirus, which he said has left millions of Americans’ finances “in ruin.” “Experts expect distress across a number of consumer credit markets, including an avalanche of loan defaults and auto repossessions,” he said.What follows is a breakdown of policy topics that Gensler and Chopra will confront at the hearing — and, if confirmed, in their jobs:Retail InvestorsThe popularity of commission-free trading — spearheaded by Robinhood — has forced regulators to grapple with new…



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