Consumer News & Views
Published twice monthly
May 15, 2012

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In this Issue…

  • Since Wall Street Banks Can't Control Themselves, it's time to Reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act.
  • State Department FCU Launches Membership Campaign.
  • Transamerica Sets the Pace for Financial Solutions.
  • Apply for the 2012 Green CSM Certification Program.

Since Wall Street Banks Can't Control Themselves, it's time to Reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act

It's as if nothing has changed in the past five years. JPMorgan Chase, the nation's largest bank, sacked three of its top investment executives including chief investment officer Ina Drew after Jamie Dimon, the chief executive, disclosed the bank's stunning $2 billion loss on May 10th. But why is Dimon still in the saddle? Shouldn't the CEO resign after JPMorgan Chase made another huge credit bet that went bad?

Politicians and regulators are fuming. But, so are consumers who have been hard hit by banks and borne the brunt of Wall Street's greed and high stakes trading gambits. This recent fiasco has set off renewed regulatory scrutiny of the industry. According to the New York Times, Mr. Dimon has largely sidestepped blame for the loss, although he has offered numerous apologies for the blunder, the biggest of his eight-year tenure at JPMorgan.

Executives said that within the last several months, Ina Drew told traders at the bank's chief investment office in London to execute trades meant to shield the bank from the turmoil in Europe. Drew thought those bets could protect the bank from losses and even earn a tidy profit, according to bank employees.

But when market tides abruptly shifted in April and early May, Drew's instructions to traders to trim what had become a gigantic bet came too late to avoid racking up losses that could eventually exceed the current $2 billion estimate. Within the bank, there is also ample frustration that instead of reducing the losses, Ms. Drew's traders may have worsened them.

Again, this is an example of over-reaching and unnecessary risk-taking on the part of big banks. It's obvious that Wall Street cannot control its appetite for these kinds of risky deals. And so, Congress should move quickly to reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act, a Depression-era law that curbed speculation by separating deposit and investment banks. The law was repealed in 1999. We support such action now!


Join SDFCU today! Take advantage of SDFCU's $25 Spring Membership Promotion. Hurry in, this offer ends June 15, 2012. Or visit us online at: https://www.sdfcu.org/join Any consumer 16 years of age or older can join through the State Department FCU's partnership with the American Consumer Council. Just check the box on the credit union application and you'll be part of one of America's great credit unions!


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Transamerica is the leader in providing consumers with financial, insurance and retirement solutions. Let Transamerica help you. Click here to learn how: http://www.transamerica.com.

The way we see it, we don't just crunch numbers and manage investments. We make things. 14.2 million customers count on us to help them make the things that matter. Things like peace of mind, steady incomes and fulfilling retirements. We've always stood behind a simple idea: we do what we say we're going to do.

We've done so for over 100 years, and we'll keep delivering on our promises so we can keep making the things that make Tomorrow better.

The predecessor of Transamerica Life Insurance Company was founded in 1906. With more than a century of experience, Transamerica has built a reputation on solid management, sound decisions and consumer confidence. In 1999, Transamerica was acquired by AEGON N.V.

High Industry Ratings:

Consistently high ratings are a direct reflection of the care with which Transamerica manages its business. Transamerica's life insurance subsidiaries have received high ratings from the industry's most respected independent rating services.

The American Consumer council is proud to have Transamerica as its exclusive corporate sponsor for financial and insurance solutions to consumers.


Green CSM Certification Accepting Applications for 2012 Summer Cycle:

If your company or organization would like to increase its credibility with consumers, you should consider applying for the Green CSM Certification. Applications for the 2012 Summer cycle are now being accepted through August 31, 2012.

It's a proven fact that consumers want to do business with companies that are eco-friendly and practice Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). The process is straight-forward and all applicants are recognized by ACC and the Green USA Institute.

All applicants complete the criteria and submit their responses to ACC's Green Consumer Council for review, assessment and feedback. Program details and the Green CSM Certification criteria can be viewed at ACC's website located at: http://americanconsumercouncil.org/greenc.asp