Cuomo Announces Settlement with Rattner
On Thursday, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announced that Quadrangle Group principal Steven Rattner has agreed to pay $10 million and refrain from doing business with any New York pension funds for five years, however the settlement does not require Rattner to admit any wrongdoing. The settlement was in response to Cuomo’s investigation of Rattner’s alleged role in a scandal involving the state’s public employees’ pension fund. Rattner already agreed to pay $6.2 million to settle a separate Securities and Exchange Commission case related to its pay-to-play investigation. The SEC settlement also prevents Mr. Rattner from associating with any investment adviser or broker dealer for two years.
Treasury Announces Six More Banks Repaid TARP Loans
On Wednesday, the Treasury Department announced that six more banks had repaid the government loans received through the Troubled Assets Relief Program, or TARP. The Treasury also said that out of $389 billion disbursed through TARP, the government had received repayments of $235 billion plus dividends and other payments totaling $35 billion, for a grand total of $270 billion. Banks repaying the government on Wednesday included East West Bancorp of Pasadena, CA; Webster Financial of Waterbury, CT; 1st Source Corporation of South Bend, ID; Surrey Bancorp of Mount Airy, NC; Nationwide Bankshares of West Point, NE; Haviland Bancshares of Haviland, KS.
Christmas Week Jobless Claims Drop
On Thursday, the Labor Department announced that jobless claims for the week of Christmas dropped to a level that has not been seen since July 2008. The number of people filing for unemployment fell by 34,000 to a seasonally adjusted 388,000 the week ending December 25. The four-week moving average decreased by 12,500 to 414,000 from 426,500. New filings have been hovering below 450,000 a week since the beginning of November. The Labor Department reports next Friday on the number of jobs added and the unemployment rate in December which is based on a survey taken in mid-December.
FCC Chairman Announces Support of Comcast NBC Universal Merger
Last Thursday, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Julius Genachowski circulated to the other four FCC commissioners a proposed order to approve the Comcast NBC Universal merger with certain conditions. The proposal is now being reviewed by the other commissioners and is expected to be voted on in the next few weeks. Comcast needs FCC as well as Justice Department approval before it can take control of the entertainment company that owns the NBC network, Universal Pictures and cable channels such as CNBC, MSNBC, USA and Bravo.
If you have any questions regarding any of these issues, please contact:
Matt Jessee, Policy Advisor
1 314 259 2463