Major credit card issuers are shrugging off rising competition from buy now, pay later offerings, with American Express CEO Steve Squeri noting, "[BNPL is] used as a customer-acquisition vehicle, and that's just not the game that we're playing." Synchrony Financial CEO Brian Wenzel says, "Over the last six months, the merchants are starting to realize there's a high cost to these short-term pay-in-four products."
The launch of the first bitcoin futures exchange-traded fund proved a major success last week, as the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF raised $550 million in the first day of trading. While the launch had Securities and Exchange Commission approval, Ben Johnson, director of global ETF research for Morningstar, says, "I don't think the SEC is in any big hurry to move forward and allow direct investment in bitcoin by ETFs anytime soon."
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's proposed reporting requirements to meet Section 1071 of Dodd-Frank will likely hinder lending to businesses owned by minorities and women, writes Bryan Bashur. "[O]pening the door for federal agencies to gain leverage to intervene in private contracts is distortive and may end up promoting discrimination instead of ending it," Bashur writes.
The Financial Stability Oversight Council's report on climate change risk to the financial system calls for more disclosures from firms "to help determine exposure to material climate-related financial risks." The report could "lead to the banking agencies requiring banks to collect more data for internal use from corporate clients on their climate change risks," said Jaret Seiberg, a financial policy analyst at Cowen Washington Research Group.
Regions Financial CFO David Turner said the bank is actively looking for other acquisition targets following the buyout of Enerbank USA earlier this year. The bank is particularly looking for ways to diversify its revenue streams, Turner said.
Citigroup has enlisted a law firm to carry out an independent racial equity audit of the bank to further the Action for Racial Equity initiative it launched last year. Vice President Edward Skyler said the audit aims to "help us assess the impact our work is having and will help inform how to adapt and grow our work to address the racial wealth gap."
A resurgence of tourism in major US cities has led to a drastic increase in bank account, ATM and payment card fraud. Fraud attempts during the second quarter jumped 411% in Las Vegas and 396% in New York City, according to a report by Feedzai.
Mortgage lenders are expanding their diversity and inclusion practices as 70% of new households over the next 10 years are expected to be headed by minorities. "The reality of America shifting to becoming more a majority-minority creates a burning platform for us to say: Are we in these communities, are we caring for these communities?" said Wells Fargo executive vice president and head of home lending Kristy Fercho.
Saule Omarova's past views advocating central political control over banking and other aspects of the economy should disqualify her from running the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, writes the Wall Street Journal Editorial Board. "The Senate should defer to Presidents on most nominees, but not on one who loathes the institutions and system she'd regulate," the board writes.
Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler said cryptocurrency companies should endeavor to comply with financial and banking regulations rather than engage in regulatory arbitrage. Gensler also stressed that, while stablecoins are increasingly used as substitutes for cash, they are actually owned and controlled by the platform that issues them, rather than exchanges or investors.