Senate banking panel questions 3 Trump nominees

By Danielle Haynes Follow @DanielleHaynes1 Contact the Author   |  Jan. 23, 2018 at 4:46 PM
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Jan. 23 (UPI) -- The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs on Tuesday questioned President Donald Trump's nominees to three financial regulatory positions.

The senators held a simultaneous confirmation hearing for Marvin Goodfriend for a Federal Reserve governorship, Jelena McWilliams for chairwoman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and Thomas Workman for member of the Financial Stability Oversight Council.

Though the committee was expected to approve all three nominees, Democrats grilled Goodfriend about why he incorrectly warned that the Federal Reserve's reaction to the 2008 financial crisis would lead to inflation. Inflation has been below 2 percent since the crisis.

Goodfriend didn't directly answer Democrats' questions about his error, but instead spoke about the importance of low inflation, The Washington Post reported.

"I think based on the kind of judgment you have demonstrated, American families are very lucky that you weren't on the Fed board over the last several years," Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., said.

Meanwhile, McWilliams told the committee that if confirmed as head of the FDIC, she would ease regulations for smaller community banks and would speed up how quickly deposit insurance applications are reviewed, The Wall Street Journal reported.

"I will certainly make sure that the FDIC moves swiftly," she said. "We need to replenish the banks that actually closed down."

Should he be confirmed, Workman would represent the insurance industry on the FSOC. The council is reconsidering its classification of insurance companies large enough and critical enough to potentially trigger a crisis, The Hill reported.

Workman wouldn't answer whether he thought the $50 billion threshold for that classification was important, saying he wasn't familiar enough with the topic.

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