Press Clips

For copies of press clips listed below, please contact Federal Financial Analytics at Please include the date and title of the requested item(s).

17 11, 2023

Politico, Friday, November 17, 2023

2023-11-17T11:47:39-05:00November 17th, 2023|Press Clips|

‘The general’s at risk’: FDIC controversy threatens plans to rein in Wall Street

By Zachary Warmbrodt

The misconduct scandal swirling at the FDIC is threatening to derail a Washington crackdown on the biggest U.S. banks … “The proposal is showing some very significant vulnerabilities,” Federal Financial Analytics managing partner Karen Petrou said of the planned hike in bank capital.…

16 11, 2023

New York Times, Thursday, November 16, 2023

2023-11-27T11:33:36-05:00November 16th, 2023|Press Clips|

Bidenomics Has a Mortal Enemy and It Isn’t Trump

By Karen Petrou

On Oct. 26, the Department of Commerce announced that gross domestic product had grown at an annual rate of 4.9 percent in the third quarter. This growth rate ran well above even optimistic forecasts, leading to what can only be called triumphalism from a White House dead-set on making “Bidenomics” a key to its 2024 presidential campaign. President Biden issued a self-congratulatory statement, the White House echoed it over and over — and Donald Trump’s relative popularity increased. As the White House touted U.S. prosperity, a New York Times-Siena College poll found that 59 percent of voters in six key swing states have more confidence in Donald Trump’s ability to manage the economy over Joe Biden’s, regardless of whom they think they’ll vote for. Zero — yes, zero — respondents under 30 in three of the swing states think of the economy as “excellent.”…

2 11, 2023

American Banker, Thursday, November 2, 2023

2023-11-03T09:57:13-04:00November 2nd, 2023|Press Clips|

Banks ‘flying blind’ without cumulative data on regulatory proposals

By   Kyle Campbell

Regulatory changes, both adopted and proposed, have been in ample supply in Washington as of late, but banks and analysts alike say it’s hard to know just how those changes will fit together, in part because government forecasts have been scarce….Despite the overlapping nature of these proposals, there has been no effort to reconcile their combined impact on the banking sector or the broader economy, Karen Petrou, managing partner of Federal Financial Analytics said. “There is no cumulative impact statement from the agencies, and that’s just a profound failure of analytical rigor,” Petrou said. “The agencies not only seem unable to do cumulative impact analysis, but weirdly unwilling to despite the suggestions that they’re working on something ‘holistic.’ It’s puzzling.”Without a comprehensive overview of how these potential rule changes would interact with one another, banks and their representatives say regulators are running the risk of accidentally inducing bad outcomes.


24 10, 2023

Marketplace Morning Report, Tuesday, October 24, 2023

2023-10-26T14:21:28-04:00October 24th, 2023|Press Clips|

That 5% is actually kinda normal

The era of borrowing money for practically nothing is over. Today, we’re joined by Karen Petrou, co-founder and managing partner at Federal Financial Analytics, to learn about the history of 5% bond yields and what currently higher yields mean for the broader economy.


19 10, 2023

Bloomberg, Thursday, October 19, 2023

2023-10-24T16:45:25-04:00October 19th, 2023|Press Clips|

US Weighs Leaning on Banks to Curb Hedge Fund Leveraged Trading

By Lydia Beyoud and Katanga Johnson

Top US regulators are zeroing in on dangers posed by highly leveraged hedge fund trades, and considering options to rein in risks to the broader financial system. Regulators are especially concerned about the growth of one strategy known as the basis trade, which involves the use of leverage to profit from the price gap between Treasury futures and the underlying cash market. Borrowing in the repurchase market using US Treasuries as collateral has soared in recent years to almost $3 trillion….Karen Petrou, a managing partner at Washington-based consulting firm Federal Financial Analytics Inc., says that regulators are aware of the difficulties of imposing major rule changes or designating firms.
“The banking agencies know this,” she said. “Short of these new tools, then, regulators are hoping to reduce counterparty risk by using their existing powers.”

17 10, 2023

Politico, Morning Money, Tuesday, October 17, 2023

2023-10-17T13:33:39-04:00October 17th, 2023|Press Clips|

By Victoria Guida and Zachary Warmbrodt

The agencies, industry and observers have floated a range of options on how to improve the guardrails over the long term:Federal Financial Analytics managing partner Karen Petrou said there needed to be more rigorous planning and stress testing of banks’ plans for funding in an emergency, which would help them weather the kind of social media-fueled run that brought down SVB.


29 09, 2023

American Banker, Friday, September 29, 2023

2023-09-29T16:46:42-04:00September 29th, 2023|Press Clips|

Absolute zero: Lessons learned from the Fed’s zero interest rate experiment

By Kyle Campbell

Once a controversial move, lowering interest rates to effectively zero is now an accepted part of the Federal Reserve’s crisis playbook, despite the havoc that a rapid increase in rates has wreaked on the housing market and banks’ balance sheets. Fed Chair Jerome Powell said he would not hesitate to take rates to their lower bound again in the future, despite the ramifications of that move present in the economy today…. Karen Petrou, managing partner of Federal Financial Analytics, said the Fed’s various methods have been effective in averting a complete collapse of the financial system. To that end, she said, the Fed does not need to remove any tools or put limitations on the degree of their use. Instead, Petrou said, the Fed should focus on how and when to pull such support back once crisis moments have passed. “The real question to ask is not whether tools like ultra-low, negative — in real terms negative — interest rates, and quantitative easing of enormous proportions are the wrong tools to use in an emergency,” Petrou said. “The real question is how long do those tools remain in the financial system and how much damage do they do when, as was the case in 08 and I think in 2020, the Fed is frightened to step back and let the market start to function.”


29 09, 2023

MarketWatch, Friday, September 29, 2023

2023-09-29T13:27:35-04:00September 29th, 2023|Press Clips|

Here’s how a government shutdown can cause a major financial crisis

By Chris Matthews

As a government shutdown appears likely, Americans are preparing for disruptions to food aid, air travel, and much more. Worse yet, it’s also possible that a prolonged shutdown could contribute to systemic stress in U.S. financial markets. That’s according to Karen Petrou, managing director of the advisory company Federal Financial Analytics Inc. “Financial stability depends on part on critical financial infrastructure, particularly in the payment, settlement and clearing spaces, and a large and increasing amount of that infrastructure is outside the reach of the banking agencies,” Petrou said in an interview with MarketWatch……. Petrou also warned that recent fragility in the market for U.S. Treasuries, which has seen less liquidity and wider bid-ask spreads of late, could be exacerbated as global investors become less confident in the competence of the U.S. Congress. A third risk is that the millions of Americans who work for the federal government will have to without pay until the shutdown is resolved. Petrou said the ultimate hit to GDP may not be large, because federal workers are typically made whole after a shutdown ends. “But you’ve already got 60% of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, and we know that government workers in the 2018 shutdown were missing rent and mortgage payments,” she said. “That could undermine more vulnerable financial institutions, particularly nonbank online lenders.”


15 09, 2023

Politico, Friday, September 15, 2023

2023-09-15T13:51:34-04:00September 15th, 2023|Press Clips|

‘Triple threat’: Auto strike joins a messy season for Biden’s economy

By Sam Sutton

The strike against Detroit’s Big Three automakers is hitting the U.S. economy at a precarious time — as it’s struggling with an era of high inflation and soaring borrowing costs. Combined with other emerging headwinds — rising gas prices, tightening credit, the resumption of student loan payments and shrinking household savings — the walkout could slow growth just as President Joe Biden and Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell are trying to steer the U.S. away from a recession….“None of these is a shot in the temple; they’re nonfatal,” Federal Financial Analytics managing partner Karen Petrou said. “But none is good, and the American public is fragile. It doesn’t take much to throw them off.” Pillars of the economy — including the job market and consumer spending — remain strong. But a protracted auto industry strike could be a significant test for Powell, who is already under pressure from progressives to relax monetary policy as inflation levels out in key segments of the economy.



7 09, 2023

S&P Global, Thursday, September 7, 2023

2023-09-07T16:10:59-04:00September 7th, 2023|Press Clips|

Spinout of banking unit could be best option for embattled Hawaiian Electric

By Author Alex Graf, Syed Muhammad Ghaznavi

Questions are swirling about American Savings Bank FSB’s future as its parent company Hawaiian Electric Industries Inc. faces mounting lawsuits. As the only bank in the country owned by a publicly traded utility company, American Savings Bank is in an unprecedented position as its parent company Hawaiian Electric comes under pressure following fires that devastated the town of Lahaina….”Without downstreamed parent-company cash in hand to protect it from the utility’s travails, the insured depository and thus the FDIC are sure to suffer,” Karen Petrou, the co-founder and managing partner at Federal Financial Analytics, wrote in a recent blog post. The bank had $8.21 billion in total deposits at June 30, and $1.75 billion of those were uninsured, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data. In the press release, American Savings Bank touted its liquidity and capital position, and assured customers that their deposits are safe. The bank has 273% of liquidity coverage for its uninsured deposits and a common equity Tier 1 ratio of 12.23%. It also has borrowing capacity of $3.1 billion from the Federal Home Loan Bank and Federal Reserve, according to the press release. Banking regulators are also in a precarious situation because they do not have oversight of Hawaiian Electric like they do for most bank holding companies. When a parent company is a bank or savings and loan holding company, the Federal Reserve can …

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