Economic growth expected to prompt interest-rate hike | Japan seeks to avoid US auto tariffs | EU, Iran agree on payment system to overcome US sanctions
September 25, 2018
Financial Services SmartBrief
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Economic growth expected to prompt interest-rate hike
The Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates Wednesday in light of a forecast of 4.4% economic growth in the third quarter and increases in hiring and inflation. This would be the third rate increase this year.
Fox Business (9/25) 
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Industry Watch
Japan seeks to avoid US auto tariffs
Japanese negotiators are trying to persuade the US to forgo increased tariffs on vehicles made in Japan as they work toward bilateral trade talks. President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe might make a joint announcement on the issue Wednesday.
Nikkei Asian Review (Japan) (tiered subscription model) (9/25),  The Japan Times/Agence France-Presse/Jiji Press (9/24) 
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EU, Iran agree on payment system to overcome US sanctions
The EU and Iran have agreed to create a special-purpose vehicle to pay Iran for oil and other exports, despite a US threat of sanctions. Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the EU said in a joint statement they are committed to protecting freedom "to pursue legitimate business with Iran."
Deutsche Welle (Germany)/Agence France-Presse/Reuters/The Associated Press (9/25) 
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European banks want extension of Dodd-Frank changes
Midtier European banks want their US operations to enjoy the same relaxed rules US banks face under changes to the Dodd-Frank Act. Otherwise, US banks' foreign operations could face retaliation.
Financial Times (subscription required) (9/25) 
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U.S. Bank offers online loans for small businesses
U.S. Bank's small-business customers can now apply for loans of up to $250,000 online. While the wait time for customers who apply in a branch can be up to 11 days, the online loans could be approved in as little as one day.
Bloomberg (tiered subscription model) (9/24) 
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Dimon: Big banks have not received regulatory relief
Smaller banks saw regulatory relief from recent changes to the Dodd-Frank Act, but larger banks did not, says Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase. Without throwing out Dodd-Frank entirely, lawmakers should get rid of duplication and look at things that hurt the mortgage market, among others, so growth can be enhanced safely, he says.
CNBC (9/24) 
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Reasons Consumers Switch Financial Institutions
While quality, convenience, and cost are still the top reasons why consumers switch financial institutions, there were still some surprising findings in our new report: The Secret to Consumer Loyalty: Relationship Banking.

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The Latest from Capitol Hill
Lawmakers: Don't weaken capital requirements for big banks
The Federal Reserve should maintain strong capital requirements for large financial institutions, nineteen members of Congress said in a letter to Fed Chairman Jerome Powell. The lawmakers cited concerns about a proposal from Randal Quarles, the Fed's vice chair for supervision, to ease capital requirements.
HousingWire (9/24) 
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Retirement Security
Economist: Replace tax break with credit for retirement savings
Benjamin Harris, who has served as chief economist to former Vice President Joe Biden, argues the income tax break for contributing to a 401(k) or an individual retirement account should be replaced with an upfront tax credit that is deposited directly into the account. The move would increase retirement savings for low-income and middle-class families, Harris writes.
The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (9/23) 
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Technology in the Financial Industry
Fintech lending untested in downturn, BIS says
The Bank for International Settlements says it is uncertain how well the financial-technology lending sector could withstand deterioration in credit conditions. Fintech loans hit $284 billion in 2016, and the sector has grown fastest in high-income countries with relaxed regulation.
Barron's (free content) (9/24) 
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Tests are a gift. And great tests are a great gift. To fail the test is a misfortune. But to refuse the test is to refuse the gift, and something worse, more irrevocable, than misfortune.
Lois McMaster Bujold, writer
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