House Financial Services

Report Looks At House Financial Services Priorities

House Financial ServicesThe House Financial Services Committee released a report on its 2019 accomplishments.

The report shows numerous priorities with a de-emphasis on the trading and investment world. 

The House Financial Services Committee is the committee with the most impact on securities trading in the US Congress. 

Maxine Waters is a Democrat- far-left Democrat- from the State of California and she chairs the House Financial Services Committee. 

Waters released a report on the 2019 committee accomplishments entitled, “2019 A Year in Review: A New Day A New Way”

In April 2019, The Industry Spread reported on the then burgeoning agenda for the House Financial Services Committee under Maxine Waters. 

That story noted, “Waters has made it clear for months that at least one goal was to use her power to begin as many investigations of Trump’s businesses as she could.”

Particularly, Waters was going to use her position to subpoena Trump’s tax returns. 

In the 2019 review, there is a section entitled: “Oversight of the Trump Administration” which lists five oversight hearings the committee held. 

In another section on national security, one item from May 2019 states, “US District for the Southern District of New York upholds ruling that Capital One and Deutsche Bank must turn over financial records requested by the committee,”

That is part of an ongoing court fight between the committee and the Trump administration over Trump’s tax returns and other financial records. 

The 2019 review also showed Waters interest in issues of diversity. 

Waters created the subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion in January 2019. 

That sub-committee is chaired by Joyce Beatty, a Democrat from the State of Ohio. 

In that vein, the House Financial Services Committee held hearings like Financial Services and the LGBTQ+ Community: A Review of Discrimination in Lending and Housing which was held on October 29, 2019; Promoting Inclusion: Examining the Need for Diversity Practices for America’s Changing Workforce which was held on October 17, 2019; and Examining the Racial and Gender Wealth Gap in America which was held on September 24, 2019. 

Legislatively, the full House passed H.R. 5084 Improving Corporate Governance Through Diversity Act of 2019, a bill which started in the House Financial Services Committee. 

Waters also used committee resources to examine issues like the homelessness crisis, affordable housing, and predatory lending. 

Waters introduced H.R. 1856 the Ending Homelessness Act in March 2019, according to the report. 

In September 2019, the report stated, “the committee convenes hearing on abusive debt collection practices and the student loan debt crisis.”

Waters and the committee has plenty on its plate, which means far less scrutiny of trading and markets, though Waters can walk and chew gum at the same time, to some degree. 

For instance, Waters, in a section touting her bi-partisan efforts, noted a bill she moved through the House of Representatives with Patrick McHenry, a Republican from the State of North Carolina, who is also the ranking member- or leader of the minority- on the committee. 

It was H.R. 624 Promoting Transparency and Standards for Corporate Insiders, “bi-partisan legislation to curb illegal insider trading. The bill passed the House shortly after introduction,” the report stated. 

The report also had a section entitled “Putting Consumers and Investors First” which had most of the accomplishments related to securities trading. 

However, most of that section is related to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a new government agency, the brainchild of Elizabeth Warren, the Democrat Senator and Presidential candidate from the State of Massachusetts- which has little to nothing to do with securities trading. 

The committee also did some work, according to the report, on the issue of financial technology innovation. 

Waters created the Taskforce on Financial Technology and Artificial Technology and that task force held eight hearings in 2019. 

One recent hearing held by the task force is “Robots on Wall Street: The Impact of AI on Capital Markets and Jobs in the Financial Services Industry” which was held on December 6, 2019. 

Facebook founder, CEO, and Chair Mark Zuckerberg faced a grilling in the committee in a hearing from October 2019 about his idea for a digital currency, Libra.