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Monday, Sep 01st

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The Scholars Who Shill for Wall Street

Shilling for wall streetProfessor Todd Zywicki is vying to be the toughest critic of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the new agency set up by the landmark Dodd-Frank financial reform law to monitor predatory lending practices. In research papers and speeches, Zywicki not only routinely slams the CFPB’s attempts to regulate bank overdraft fees and payday lenders; he depicts the agency as a “parochial” bureaucracy that is “guaranteed to run off the rails.”

He has also become one of the leading detractors of the CFPB’s primary architect, Elizabeth Warren, questioning her seminal research on medical bankruptcies and slamming her for once claiming Native American heritage to gain “an edge in hiring.”

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US CEOs break pay record as top 10 earners take home at least $100m each

CEO salariesFor the first time ever, the 10 highest-paid chief executives in the US received more than $100m in compensation last year, and two took home billion-dollar paychecks, according to a leading annual survey of executive pay.

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's co-founder, was America's highest-paid boss in 2012, according to GMI Ratings annual poll of executive compensation, released on Tuesday. Zuckerberg's total compensation topped $2.27bn – more than $6m a day. His base salary was $503,205 but the vast majority of his enormous pay package came from exercising 60m Facebook share options when the company went public last year.

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Almost 1-in-4 U.S. children lived in poverty 2012, same as '11

US children in povertyAlmost 1-in-4 U.S. children lived in poverty in 2012, not statistically different from 2011 despite improvements in the economy, researchers say.

Beth Mattingly of the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire and research assistant professor of sociology; Jessica Carson, a research scientist at the Carsey Institute; and Andrew Schaefer, a doctoral student in sociology and a research assistant at the Carsey Institute said the state of New Hampshire experienced the largest increase in child poverty of any state in the country from 2011-12.

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I'm a college graduate who had to go on food stamps

Food stampsWhen I first heard a friend of mine from college was on food stamps, I was shocked. We were both recent graduates of a top liberal arts college, and I could not fathom that someone from my school was in such a "desperate" situation. Not long after, I was on food stamps as well.

The past year since I left graduate school has pretty much been: job application, job application, job application, interview, rejection, another job application, temp work, job application, another temp job, more job applications. For nearly eight months, I was unable to secure opportunities that weren't sporadic or temporary, making it difficult to pay rent and buy food.

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Richest 1 percent earn biggest share since '20s

one percentThe gulf between the richest 1 percent and the rest of America is the widest it's been since the Roaring '20s.

The very wealthiest Americans earned more than 19 percent of the country's household income last year — their biggest share since 1928, the year before the stock market crash. And the top 10 percent captured a record 48.2 percent of total earnings last year.

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Bank of America Said to Cut 2,100 Jobs in Mortgage Slump

Bank of AmericaBank of America Corp., the second-largest U.S. lender, will eliminate about 2,100 jobs and shutter 16 mortgage offices as rising interest rates weaken loan demand, said two people with direct knowledge of the plans.

About 1,500 of the workers helped process home loans, said one of the people, who asked for anonymity because while affected employees were notified on Aug. 29, the scope of the plans hadn’t been publicly announced. About 400 worked in a suburban Cleveland call center, and 200 dealt with overdue mortgages, the person said. The reductions are scheduled to be completed by Oct. 31, the people said.

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Head Start eliminated services to 57,000 children because of sequester

Head StartHead Start programs erased services for 57,000 U.S. children in the coming school year to balance sequester-starved budgets, federal data indicated.

The latest numbers, based on results of "reduction plans" Head Start grantees submitted to the Department of Health and Human Services, will affect tens of thousands of poor families across the country who rely on Head Start for early learning programs, day care, and social services and medical care for their children.

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