On Thursday, Treasury Secretary Lew testified before the House FinServ Committee on the international financial system, with GOP Members predictably delivering a scathing criticism of the Administration’s policies abroad. Led by Chairman Hensarling (R-TX), Mr. Lew took a beating over IMF quota reform as well as the transparency of the FSOC’s SIFI designation process (see FSM Report SYSTEMIC65), with several Republican Members focusing particularly on the Treasury’s role in the designations of G-SIIs (see FSM Report INSURANCE33). Despite their forceful questioning, however, Mr. Lew declined to offer any new details on these matters. Meanwhile, Reps. Royce (R-CA) and Huizenga (R-MI) took strong issue with the IAIS’ capital standards for internationally-active insurers (see FSM Report INSURANCE37), continuing to raise fears that U.S. interests are not adequately represented abroad. International trade received much less attention, although Mr. Lew notably commented that financial services should not be included in the TTIP negotiations. Democratic Members did their best to defend of the IMF reforms, but generally focused on a broader array of issues, including the renewal of TRIA, foreign aid, and the impact of Russian sanctions. This report analyzes today’s hearing.
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