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Fall 2010 Issue of the JPIC Report Available October 10th, 2010
Read the new issue of the JPIC Report. If you are not receiving a hard copy in the mail and would like to, please contact the JPIC Office by emailing Rowena Gono.
ICCR Members on The Daily Show: Holier Than Dow June 20th, 2010
Members of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) working on financial reform appear on The Daily Show. Samantha Bee interviewed the group of Catholics: Seamus Finn, OMI, Sr. Barbara Aires, SCNJ, Fr. Joe LaMar, MM and Cathy Rowan, representing the Maryknoll Sisters.
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Transparency on Congo Conflict Minerals Folded into the Financial Regulatory Reform Bill May 25th, 2010
With the passage of the Restoring American Financial Stability Act (S. 3217) in the United States Senate, the Congo Conflict Minerals and the Energy Security through Transparency (ESTT) amendments have made it into legislation. However, as neither amendment was in the House version of the financial reform legislation, both amendments will be taken up by the House/Senate Conference committee which will work to reconcile the differences between the two bills. Both amendments were agreed to during the passage of the Restoring American Financial Stability Act in the Senate.
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Strong 39% Vote at Bank of America for Religious Shareholders’ Proxy Resolution Maintains Growing Pressure for More Derivatives Disclosure on Wall Street April 28th, 2010
Vote at BofA’s Annual Meeting Comes on Heels of 30 Percent Support at Citigroup on Same Resolution; More Disclosure Vital at BofA Given How Mishandling of CDOs Tripped Up BofA’s Merrill Lynch.
In the second major 2010 shareholder vote urging more derivatives disclosure, a much higher-than-expected 39 percent of Bank of America (BofA) shares were cast today in support of a resolution sponsored by faith-based institutional investors belonging to the 300-member Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR). The BofA shareholder vote took place as Congress debates the fate of financial regulatory reform, including increased derivatives disclosure.
The Bank of America shareholder vote improves on a 30 percent support level for the same proxy resolution at Citigroup on April 20, 2010. The ICCR member-sponsored resolution gave Bank of America shareholders an opportunity, as it did at Citigroup, to express their concerns about the lack of transparency in the derivatives market that contributed significantly to the financial crisis.
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Bank of America is 2nd Major U.S. Financial Institution to Face Derivatives Proxy Vote By Shareholders April 26th, 2010
The verdict at BofA’s Wednesday Annual Meeting comes on the heels of a huge 30 percent support at Citigroup on the same Resolution. Of the four derivatives disclosure resolutions being filed, that with BofA may be the most telling, considering how the mishandling of Credit Default Swaps (a type of derivative) tripped up BofA’s Merrill Lynch.
With a much higher-than-expected 30 percent of Citigroup shares voted on April 20th in favor of more disclosure of derivatives practices, the focus now shifts to Bank of America (BofA), where shareholders will vote Wednesday (April 28th) on the same resolution sponsored by faith-based institutional investors belonging to the 300-member Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR). The BofA vote will take place as Congress debates the fate of financial regulatory reform, including increased derivatives disclosure.
The resolution gives shareholders an opportunity, as they did at Citigroup, to express their concerns about the lack of transparency in the derivatives market that contributed significantly to the financial crisis. The higher-than-expected vote from Citigroup shareholders resulted even though the United States government, which controls 27 percent of Citigroup as a result of the bank bailouts, failed to fully support the resolution.
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The Oblates joined a broad array of groups concerned about commodity speculation in urging the inclusion of a bill regulating derivatives in the larger Senate financial reform legislation being debated this week. Specifically, the groups are asking that the “Wall Street Transparency and Accountability Act” (reported out of the Agriculture Committee on Wednesday by a bipartisan vote), be incorporated into the “American Financial Stability Act” (S.3217) – otherwise known as the comprehensive “Wall Street Reform” bill.
The Missionary Oblates signed a letter generated by the Commodity Markets Oversight Coalition, an informal alliance of industry groups, consumer advocates and academics, representing commodity producers, processors, distributors, retailers, and residential, commercial and industrial end-users. The signatories believe that policy in the commodity trading markets should aim to strengthen oversight, transparency and stability, and to address inadequacies in the existing derivatives markets, both regulated and over-the-counter. As faith-based shareholders, the Missionary Oblates have been pressing for better management of derivatives in discussions with the financial services sector for a number of years.