Why Dodd-Frank Needs To Be Fixed

16 Mar 2018

This is an in depth article explaining the enormous monstrosity that is Dodd-Frank. Initial compliance costs runs in the hundreds of thousands of dollars ($400M – $600M for Chase). Smaller banks could not keep up with those costs.

Another issue is that much of Dodd-Frank still has a bunch of regulations that need to be determined. It was estimated to be 12-18 months to complete everything. It probably hasn’t been done. But what that does is this… because there is a bunch of legislation that is yet to be determined – it enriches the politicians. Why? Banks will spend money lobbying politicians as the various undetermined rules are determined. That’s in the article below as well.

Too big not to fail – The Economist, 2012/02/18

Over-regulated America – The Economist, 2012/02/18


Toy Icon Toys’R Us Is Wrapping It Up

16 Mar 2018

Toys “R” Us shutting U.S. stores, liquidating inventory – CBS, 2018/03/15

Toys “R” Us is going out of business in the U.S. The iconic chain announced early Thursday that it’s seeking bankruptcy court approval to start closing its 735 U.S. stores and liquidating their inventory.

Some 33,000 employees will lose their jobs as a result.

Toys “R” Us, which declared bankruptcy in September, was unable to convince creditors to refinance its more than $5 billion in debt, a crushing load that experts say hampered its ability to adapt to the growth in online shopping, among other consumer trends.

The chain was hobbled by debt stemming from the 2005 leveraged buyout by KKR, Bain Capital and Vornado Realty Trust (VNO). That deal placed it at disadvantage against larger rivals such as Amazon (AMZN), Walmart (WMT) and Target (TGT), which have made inroads in the toy market in recent years.

Toys “R” Us closing leaves workers, customers hanging – CBS, 2018/03/15

The company’s current leadership only compounded its mistakes by failing to act quickly and decisively. One example: When Toys “R” Us first declared bankruptcy in September, CEO Dave Brandon vowed not to close any stores, blithely remarking that “today marks the dawn of a new era at Toys “R” Us.” He was wrong.

The bankruptcy filing doesn’t cover Toys “R” Us’ international business, but it’s struggling, too. The company’s U.K. business on Wednesday announced that it is closing its doors after failing to find a buyer — about 3,000 people will lose their jobs. Toys “R” Us is considering combining as many as 200 of its top-performing U.S. stores with its Canadian operations, but Selbst said that would be complicated, expressing doubt it will fly.

Britain’s Child Sex Scandal Exposed

16 Mar 2018

Britain’s ‘worst ever’ child grooming scandal exposed: Hundreds of young girls raped, beaten, sold for sex and some even KILLED – UK Mirror, 2018/03/11

The rape hell of vulnerable young girls in one town – Telford – went on for a shocking 40 years, the Sunday Mirror can reveal.

As many as 1,000 children could have suffered at the merciless hands of perverts and torturers in Telford since the 1980s.

The Mirror’s 18-month investigation reveals abuse on unprecedented levels. We found:

  • Social workers knew of abuse in the 1990s but police took a decade to launch a probe
  • Council staff viewed abused and trafficked children as “prostitutes” instead of victims, according to previously unseen files
  • Authorities failed to keep details of abusers from Asian communities for fear of “racism”
  • Police failed to investigate one recent case five times until an MP intervened
  • One victim said cops tried to stop her finding out why her abusers had not been prosecuted because they feared she would talk to us

This is a terrible account of what happens when this behavior remains unchecked and is allowed to spread. Young girls have been abused since the 1980s. And we see how paralyzing fear can be… fear of being called a racist allowed this behavior to persist.

Senate Approves Dodd-Frank Roll Back

16 Mar 2018

Despite the title of the article, it was a bi-partisan effort to roll back certain measures of the Obama era legislation. 17 Senate Dems approved the roll back. It goes to the House next.

Republicans Took A Hatchet To Obama’s Banking Regulations – Daily Caller, 2018/03/06

Dodd-Frank was originally intended to increase transparency by implementing a consistent set of regulations aimed at closing loopholes and making firms accountable for their own mistakes. The bill attempted to shift the burden of major financial mistakes from taxpayers to market participants, ensuring those who partake in risky investment practices would bear the financial burden of their mistakes. Dodd-Frank promised to “end too big to fail” and “promote financial stability.”

Large banking institutions have grown dramatically since the passage of Dodd-Frank despite the act’s intentions, and small community banks have incurred serious losses as they try to keep up. Crippling regulations saddled smaller banks, forcing American consumers to market with fewer investment vehicles and greater costs.

Trump’s administration applauded the Senate’s move Wednesday, championing it as a win for small and community banks subjected to burdensome regulations for nearly a decade.

“The bill provides much-needed relief from the Dodd-Frank Act for thousands of community banks and credit unions and will spur lending and economic growth without creating risks to the financial system. By tailoring regulation, the bill seeks to prevent excessive regulation from undermining the viability of local and regional banks and their ability to serve their communities,” White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement.


Excessive regulation is the enemy here.  This is not a total repeal, but a removal of parts of the legislation.

Going on a Cruise? … Beware

8 Mar 2018

More cruise ships than ever are flunking health inspections – NY post, 2018/03/07

A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has revealed that 15 ships out of 250 failed crucial health checks.

This is a steep rise on 2016 when just four ships failed checks and amounts to six percent of cruise ships.

The body’s public health inspections check the cleanliness of each ship’s water, the preparation of food, pest control, the health and hygiene of employees, and the measures to stop disease breaking out on board.

Ships failed tests for several reasons, such as crew members working with contagious bugs like gastroenteritis.

Five of Carnival Cruise Lines’ ships failed checked – their liners sail to destinations like the Bahamas, the Caribbean and Mexico.

Utah Teen… Researched ISIS… Plants Homemade Bomb at School

7 Mar 2018

Police: Teen attempted to detonate explosive device at Pine View, researched ISIS

Police said a homemade explosive device was the item discovered in a backpack at Pine View High School Monday that forced the evacuation of the school. Police said if the device had detonated, it would have caused significant injury or death. Police have a suspect in custody.

The suspect was arrested and faces charges of manufacture, possession, sale, use or attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. More charges may be pending, according to police.

It was determined that if the device had detonated, it would have caused significant injury or death.

During the interview with investigators, the suspect admitted to taking the American flag down and replacing it with an ISIS flag at Hurricane High School.

Wow… I read some teens saw a backpack with smoke coming out and notified authorities in the school.

Steel, Tariffs, Trade War – Beyond Trump #2

7 Mar 2018

This is good info, before we started penalizing Chinese steel in 2016, on how these unfair trade practices persists. There is much more at the link.

Surging Steel Imports Put Up To Half a Million U.S. Jobs at Risk – Economic Policy Institute, 2014/05/13

The U.S. steel industry is facing its worst import crisis in more than a decade. In the aftermath of the Great Recession, steelmakers in other countries, backed by aggressive government support, continued to add production capacity as demand stagnated. The open and large U.S. market became the prime target for the massive excess supply stemming from this excess capacity, and, since 2011, U.S. steel imports have surged and import unit values have plummeted.

Surging imports of unfairly traded steel are threatening U.S. steel production, which supports more than a half million U.S. jobs across every state of the nation. The import surge has depressed domestic steel production and revenues, leading to sharp declines in net income in the U.S. steel industry over the past two years (2012–2013), layoffs for thousands of workers, and reduced wages for many more.

So what I am understanding is that the Chinese (primarily, and probably a couple of other countries) is trying to undercut the market, wipe out international competition, and increase their world market share. They are flooding the steel market with excess supply which lowers prices. Many of these Chinese steel producers are owned or controlled by the government, and received government subsidies. So they have they money of the entire national at their disposal to flood the market.

So what I am seeing with these tariffs are protection and support for the steel producers in the country.  While at the same time, there will be some pain for those on the back end, who purchase the steel to make their products.  Hopefully the pain will be for the short term.


U.S. Steel follows tariff promise with plans to restart Illinois furnace – Pittsbugh Post Gazette, 2018/03/07

U.S. Steel announced Wednesday that it will restart one of two blast furnaces and the steelmaking facilities at its Granite City Works in Illinois, recalling about 500 employees.

The mill restart comes on the heels of President Donald J. Trump’s announcement that he would seeking tariffs of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum. Getting the mill running again could take up to four months, the company said.