AG: 11 Institutions Subpoenaed in Mortgage Securities Probe

Eleven financial institutions were recently issued subpoenas related to a newly expanded federal-state effort to crack down on misconduct in the mortgage-backed securities market, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said today. The new “Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Working Group” had its first full meeting today.

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Romney to Save Taxpayers $2,900 on Average, Millionaires $146K: Report

Republican Mitt Romney’s tax plan would cut taxes for about 75 percent of taxpayers by an average of $2,900, but its impact takes a wide swing among income levels with 13 percent of earners potentially seeing an average increase of $900 in taxes by 2015. These are the findings by the independent Washington research group, Tax Policy Center, which studied the tax proposal by Romney, the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.

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Consumers Empowered: A Year of Big Victories Over Small Fees

The victories by consumers over big business were resounding in 2011, although the stakes were small – monthly fees hovering at $5 or less. But to focus on the dollar amount is to miss the point that consumers took to social media in thousands and exercised their power effectively. In their biggest victory, they forced the biggest U.S. banks to quickly back off debit card fee plans that were months in the making.

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Occupy Movement Targets Foreclosed Homes, Auctions

In the midst of a national housing crisis that hasn’t even peaked by some estimates, the Occupy Wall Street movement has its sights set on foreclosed homes and the auctions that sell repossessed properties to investors. Occupy Our Homes is an offshoot campaign that plans to occupy at least 30 homes next week. Participants will help families occupy their homes to avoid foreclosure or eviction.

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Memo to U.S. Banks: Here’s How to Subvert ‘Occupy’ Movement

A Washington lobby firm has outlined in a memo a possible strategy for big banks to subvert the Occupy Wall Street movement by digging up research to “undermine their credibility in a profound way.” The proposed strategy was written on the letterhead of the lobbying firm Clark Lytle Geduldig & Cranford and addressed to a firm’s client, the American Bankers Association (ABA), reported the MSNBC program “Up w/ Chris Hayes.”

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Chase, Other Big Banks Retreat on New Debit Card Fees

The big consumer blowback from Bank of America’s planned $5-a-month debit card fee may have had a widespread impact as JPMorgan Chase and other big banks have reportedly decided not to pursue similar fees. Even Bank of America is back-peddling somewhat on its decision, but has not decided to rescind the $5-a-month fee that would be triggered by a single purchase with a debit card beginning in January.

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