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Category Archives: Legislation

The Rise of Risk Management in Financial Institutions – Diminution of Legal Function

Business Law Today – The Rise of Risk Management in Financial Institutions and a Potential Unintended Consequence – The Diminution of the Legal Function By: Thomas C. Baxter, Jr.  After the global financial crisis, a highly respected group of financial supervisors from the industrialized world convened to consider what might have caused the worst financial crisis experienced since the Great Depression.  This group – aptly named the “Senior Supervisors Group” – concluded that a material contributing cause was what they characterized as a “colossal failure of risk management.”  The Senior Supervisors Group was not alone.  Many other bodies have taken up the same topic and reached a similar conclusion. In the 10 years since the global financial crisis ended, the financial community has responded to the identified causes of the financial crisis, adopting lessons learned and significantly reforming the financial system.  This work has resulted in a financial system with individual institutions that are demonstrably more safe and more sound than before, and a much more resilient banking system overall.  In contrast to what existed on the eve of the crisis – early 2007 – today’s financial system has considerably higher capital and liquidity, as government officials and other commentators have observed.  In addition, and perhaps even more importantly if we accept the conclusion of the Senior Supervisors Group, there has been a revolution in the discipline of risk management and in the “build-out” of processes and procedures for identifying, measuring, monitoring, and controlling risk.  In the United States, for example, one may witness the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which President Obama signed into law on July 21, 2010 (the “Dodd-Frank Act”).  The Dodd-Frank Act introduced varied and different requirements for risk management, including a series of “enhanced prudential standards,” as well as governance directed at risk management requirements, like the requirement for a risk committee of the board of directors….

This article will discuss whether the rise of the risk management function has had one very specific unintended consequence – the diminution of the legal function.  To place such an important question in a proper context, this article will focus on the potential inverse relationship – it is not only that the legal function has declined in importance, but it is also that the decline has come as the direct result of the rise in risk.

Women in Congress 1917-2019: Service Dates and Committee Assignments by Member, and Lists by State and Congress

EveryCRSReport.com – Women in Congress, 1917-2019: Service Dates and Committee Assignments by Member, and Lists by State and Congress, April 9, 2019. “In total 365 women have been elected or appointed to Congress, 247 Democrats and 118 Republicans. These figures include six nonvoting Delegates, one each from Guam, Hawaii, the District of Columbia, and American… Continue Reading

Your car is watching you. Who owns the data?

Roll Call – Computers on wheels raise thorny questions about data privacy: “If you’re driving a late model car or truck, chances are that the vehicle is mostly computers on wheels, collecting and wirelessly transmitting vast quantities of data to the car manufacturer not just on vehicle performance but personal information, too, such as your… Continue Reading

New on LLRX for March 2019

The 5 new articles and 5 new columns on LLRX for March 2019 US takes tentative steps toward opening up government data – At the beginning of this year, President Trump signed into law the Open, Public, Electronic and Necessary Government Data Act, requiring that nonsensitive government data be made available in machine-readable, open formats by… Continue Reading

You elected them to write new laws. They’re letting corporations do it instead.

This story was published in partnership with USA TODAY and The Arizona Republic: “Each year, state lawmakers across the U.S. introduce thousands of bills dreamed up and written by corporations, industry groups and think tanks. Disguised as the work of lawmakers, these so-called “model” bills get copied in one state Capitol after another, quietly advancing… Continue Reading

Paper – Unsexing Pregnancy

Fontana, David and Schoenbaum, Naomi, Unsexing Pregnancy (March 11, 2019). Columbia Law Review, Vol. 119, 2019. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3350592 “Because sex does not dictate the capacity to provide care in the home or work in the market, sex-equality law combats harmful sex stereotypes by eliminating statutes and regulations that assign these roles on the… Continue Reading

Opinion: America’s ability to identify financial stability risks is weakening

Medium Riki Matsumoto – “As the ten year anniversary of the infamous Lehman Weekend has come and gone, it’s important to reflect on the lessons that we learnt. Or in the tragic case of the Office of Financial Research, the independent federal agency Congress set up to identify risks to America’s financial stability; lessons that we… Continue Reading

CRS – Free Speech and the Regulation of Social Media Conteny

Free Speech and the Regulation of Social Media Content. March 27, 2019 – “As the Supreme Court has recognized, social media sites like Facebook and Twitter have become important venues for users to exercise free speech rights protected under the First Amendment. Commentators and legislators, however, have questioned whether these social media platforms are living up… Continue Reading

Tracking House oversight in the Trump era

“House Democrats in the 116th Congress have several oversight tools to hold the Trump administration accountable and investigate executive branch misconduct. Two of the most significant mechanisms include holding congressional hearings as well as sending letters to executive branch agencies and to individuals involved in executive branch operations. Developed by Governance Studies, Brookings’s House Oversight… Continue Reading

Dome Watch via Office of Majority Leader Steny Hoyer

“Dome Watch is a product of the Office of Majority Leader Steny Hoyer. It is designed to help House staff, the press, and the public better follow the latest developments from the House Floor. The app uses data from both majorityleader.gov and demcom.house.gov, which is the official intranet for House Democratic staff (available only within… Continue Reading

The Sentencing Project 2018 Annual Report

“Criminal justice reform is a challenging undertaking, but if we take the long view we can recognize that success is possible, even if incremental at times. This was the story of reform in 2018, a year in which we saw significant gains in sentencing policy and public understanding of mass incarceration.Most prominent, of course, was… Continue Reading