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Category Archives: Financial System

Over the Line: Asset Thresholds in Bank Regulation

CRS Report – Over the Line: Asset Thresholds in Bank Regulation, May 3, 2021: “As of December 31, 2020, there were over 5,000 banks in the United States. While certain kinds of banks may be similar to each other,the industry as a whole is made of up institutions that differ in a variety of ways, in some ways quite drastically. How concentrated a bank is in loan making, how concentrated that lending is in specific loan types or geographic markets, how many other financial services the bank provides, and how much risk it is willing to take on are just a few characteristics across which banks may differ significantly. Perhaps the most striking disparity across the industry is bank size, typically measured as the value of the assets a bank owns. Nearly a fifth of banks hold less than $100 million in assets, and the industry median is about $300 million. Meanwhile, the largest U.S. bank has over $3 trillion in assets, with three others over or near $2 trillion. Relative to large banks, small banks also tend to focus more on traditional commercial bank activities such as loan making and deposit taking; be less or not at all involved in other activities such as securities dealing and derivatives; have fewer resources to dedicate to regulatory compliance; and individually pose less or no risk to the stability of the financial system. For these reasons, there is general consensus that bank regulations should be tailored to account for bank differences, although questions over how much regulation should be tightened or relaxed for different groups of banks and to exactly which banks the changes should apply are matters of perennial debate..”

AI.gov, home of the National AI Initiative

“Welcome to AI.gov, home of the National AI Initiative and connection point to ongoing activities to advance U.S. leadership in AI. The National AI Initiative Act of 2020 became law on January 1, 2021, providing for a coordinated program across the entire Federal government to accelerate AI research and application for the Nation’s economic prosperity… Continue Reading

There’s more to cryptocurrency than Bitcoin: 5 other digital coins to consider

Tech Republic – “If you’ve put off learning about digital currencies, now is the time to get up to speed because the cryptocurrency bubble keeps getting bigger. Bitcoin is almost a household name now, as it has been around for more than 10 years. The cryptocurrency was created in 2009 via a white paper written… Continue Reading

Data overload is real

Fortune – “Do you suffer from data overload? This painful condition has skyrocketed as organizations have massively increased the amount of data they collect and then…well, that’s the question—what should you actually do with it? To talk this through, I reached out to Shari Littan, director of corporate reporting research and policy at the Institute of… Continue Reading

Artificial Intelligence Is Misreading Human Emotion

The Atlantic – There is no good evidence that facial expressions reveal a person’s feelings. But big tech companies want you to believe otherwise: “…Today affect-recognition tools can be found in national-security systems and at airports, in education and hiring start-ups, in software that purports to detect psychiatric illness and policing programs that claim to predict… Continue Reading

Research: Adding Women to the C-Suite Changes How Companies Think

Harvard Business Review: “Research has shown that firms with more women in senior positions are more profitable, more socially responsible, and provide safer, higher-quality customer experiences — among many other benefits. And of course, there is a clear moral argument for increasing diversity among top management teams (TMTs). But when it comes to explaining why… Continue Reading

TIME 100 Most Influential Companies

TIME: “Which companies are shaping our future? That’s the question at the heart of our first ever TIME 100 Most Influential Companies, a new list—and an expansion of our iconic TIME100 franchise—that highlights businesses making an extraordinary impact around the world. To assemble it, TIME solicited nominations across sectors including health care, entertainment, transportation, technology… Continue Reading

Tax Evasion at the Top of the Income Distribution – Theory and Evidence

NBER Paper – “This paper studies tax evasion at the top of the U.S. income distribution using IRS micro-data from (i) random audits, (ii) targeted enforcement activities, and (iii) operational audits. Drawing on this unique combination of data, we demonstrate empirically that random audits underestimate tax evasion at the top of the income distribution. Specifically,… Continue Reading

CEO Pay Remains Stratospheric Even at Companies Battered by Pandemic

The New York Times – “…The coronavirus plunged the world into an economic crisis, sent the U.S. unemployment rate skyrocketing and left millions of Americans struggling to make ends meet. Yet at many of the companies hit hardest by the pandemic, the executives in charge were showered with riches. The divergent fortunes of C.E.O.s and… Continue Reading

A brief history of how it took almost 300 years to pass the Americans with Disabilities Act

Fast Company – “By now you’ve probably heard that the pandemic has hit certain groups more than others. Women, particularly women of color, have lost a historic number of jobs, which has a ripple effect on the wage gap and the global economy overall. What’s less well known is that between March and August 2020… Continue Reading

Why lawmakers are so interested in Apple’s and Google’s “rents”

Ars Technica:  You can’t understand the app store debate without some grasp of antitrust jargon. [Note: Primary reference is Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust, and Consumer Rights, hearing held April 21, 2021] “In economics, the concept of rent refers to money that a business makes in excess of what it would get… Continue Reading

Inside the Future 50: Why these companies thrived in the pandemic—and could grow even faster coming out of it

“As we move past the one-year mark since the COVID-19 crisis first spread to businesses and markets around the globe, it’s clear that the competitive landscape has been significantly reshaped. New winners and new losers emerged in many industries, with the difference often explained by their responses to the pandemic and the new needs it… Continue Reading