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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Foreign Holdings of Federal Debt

Foreign Holdings of Federal Debt

Date: May 28, 2015
Creator: Labonte, Marc & Nagel, Jared C.
Description: This report presents current data on estimated ownership of U.S. Treasury securities and major holders of federal debt by country. Federal debt represents the accumulated balance of borrowing by the federal government.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Small Business Administration Microloan Program

Small Business Administration Microloan Program

Date: May 28, 2015
Creator: Dilger, Robert Jay
Description: The Small Business Administration’s (SBA’s) Microloan program provides direct loans to qualified nonprofit intermediary lenders who, in turn, provide “microloans” of up to $50,000 to small businesses and nonprofit child care centers. It also provides marketing, management, and technical assistance to microloan borrowers and potential borrowers. This report opens with a discussion of the rationale provided for having a Microloan program, describes the program’s eligibility standards and operating requirements for lenders and borrowers, and examines the arguments presented by the program’s critics and advocates. It then discusses P.L. 111-240, the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, which increased the Microloan program’s loan limit for borrowers from $35,000 to $50,000, and the aggregate loan limit for intermediaries after their first year of participation in the program from $3.5 million to $5 million.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Candidates, Groups, and the Campaign Finance Environment

Candidates, Groups, and the Campaign Finance Environment

Date: May 19, 2015
Creator: Garrett, R. S.
Description: This report briefly discusses the current campaign finance environment and the implications of changes to campaign finance policy over the past several decades.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Senate Banking: Financial Regulatory Improvement Act

Senate Banking: Financial Regulatory Improvement Act

Date: May 19, 2015
Creator: Hoskins, Sean M.; Labonte, Marc & Webel, Baird
Description: This report briefly highlights some of the major policy proposals included in a May 12, 2015 discussion draft released by Senator Richard Shelby that is scheduled for markup by the Senate Banking Committee. The draft encompasses a broad package of reforms to the financial regulatory system, including some changes to the Dodd-Frank Act (P.L. 111-203).
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
International Investment Agreements (IIAs): Frequently Asked Questions

International Investment Agreements (IIAs): Frequently Asked Questions

Date: May 15, 2015
Creator: Weiss, Martin A.; Akhtar, Shayerah Ilias; Murrill, Brandon J. & Shedd, Daniel T.
Description: This report answers frequently asked questions about international investment agreements (IIAs) made between the United States and other countries. Questions are categorized in three main areas: background and context; U.S. international investment agreements; and investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS).
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
How Have Small Banks Been Affected by Financial Reform?

How Have Small Banks Been Affected by Financial Reform?

Date: May 14, 2015
Creator: Hoskins, Sean M. & Labonte, Marc
Description: This report briefly summarizes a CRS analysis of major rules issued since 2010 by banking regulators pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Act.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
"Regulatory Relief" for Banking: Selected Legislation in the 114th Congress

"Regulatory Relief" for Banking: Selected Legislation in the 114th Congress

Date: May 14, 2015
Creator: Hoskins, Sean M.; Labonte, Marc; Murphy, Edward V. & Shorter, Gary
Description: This report discusses regulatory relief legislation for banks in the 114th Congress that, at the time this report was published, has seen floor action or has been ordered to be reported by a committee.
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Uncertainty in Financial Projections of Social Security

Uncertainty in Financial Projections of Social Security

Date: May 14, 2015
Creator: Meyerson, Noah P.
Description: The financial outlook for Social Security has been the subject of much analysis and debate. This report briefly discusses a report from the Social Security Board of Trustees which contains the federal government's official financial projections for the Social Security program.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Current Debates over Exchange Rates: Overview and Issues for Congress

Current Debates over Exchange Rates: Overview and Issues for Congress

Date: May 7, 2015
Creator: Nelson, Rebecca M.
Description: This report provides information on current debates over exchange rates in the global economy. It offers an overview of how exchange rates work; analyzes specific disagreements and debates; and examines existing frameworks for potentially addressing currency disputes. It also lays out some policy options available to Congress, should Members want to take action on exchange rate issues.
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International Investment Agreements (IIAs): Frequently Asked Questions

International Investment Agreements (IIAs): Frequently Asked Questions

Date: May 5, 2015
Creator: Weiss, Martin A.; Akhtar, Shayerah Ilias; Murrill, Brandon J. & Shedd, Daniel T.
Description: This report answers frequently asked questions about international investment agreements (IIAs) made between the United States and other countries. Questions are categorized in three main areas: background and context; U.S. international investment agreements; and investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS).
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The State of Campaign Finance Policy: Recent Developments and Issues for Congress

The State of Campaign Finance Policy: Recent Developments and Issues for Congress

Date: April 30, 2015
Creator: Garrett, R. S.
Description: This report includes updated material that emphasizes the issues most prominently before the 113th Congress. It also discusses foundational information about major elements of campaign finance policy.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
An Analysis of the Regulatory Burden on Small Banks

An Analysis of the Regulatory Burden on Small Banks

Date: April 22, 2015
Creator: Hoskins, Sean M. & Labonte, Marc
Description: This report explains the concept of regulatory burden and the different ways it can be manifested. It analyzes whether small banks are relatively more burdened by regulation than big banks. To help answer that question, the report looks at the relative treatment of small and large banks in recent major regulatory proposals.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
IMF Reforms: Issues for Congress

IMF Reforms: Issues for Congress

Date: April 9, 2015
Creator: Nelson, Rebecca M. & Weiss, Martin A.
Description: This report provides information about the reforms made by the Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in December 2010, Congress's role in the reform process, and how the reforms could affect U.S. interests at the IMF.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

Date: April 8, 2015
Creator: Weiss, Martin A.
Description: This report discusses a new development bank, the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), launched by China that is posing a challenge to U.S. policymakers.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Status of the Federal Perkins Loan Program: Frequently Asked Questions

Status of the Federal Perkins Loan Program: Frequently Asked Questions

Date: March 26, 2015
Creator: Hegji, Alexandra
Description: This report answers several frequently asked questions regarding the current and future status of the Federal Perkins Loan program, which authorizes the allocation of federal funds to institutions of higher education to assist them in capitalizing revolving loan funds for the purpose of making low-interest loans to students with exceptional financial need.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Designating Systemically Important Financial Institutions (SIFIs)

Designating Systemically Important Financial Institutions (SIFIs)

Date: March 20, 2015
Creator: Labonte, Marc
Description: This report briefly discusses congressional concerns regarding the Financial Stability Oversight Council's (FSOC) authorization to designate certain non-bank entities as Systemically Important Financial Institutions (SIFI).
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Small Business Administration Microloan Program

Small Business Administration Microloan Program

Date: March 20, 2015
Creator: Dilger, Robert J.
Description: This report describes the Microloan program's eligibility standards and operating requirements for lenders and borrowers and examines the arguments presented by the program's critics and advocates. It also examines changes to the program authorized by P.L. 111-240, the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Increased Campaign Contribution Limits in the FY2015 Omnibus Appropriations Law: Frequently Asked Questions

Increased Campaign Contribution Limits in the FY2015 Omnibus Appropriations Law: Frequently Asked Questions

Date: March 17, 2015
Creator: Garrett, R. Sam
Description: This report provides brief answers to frequently asked questions about increased campaign contribution limits in the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015 (H.R. 83; P.L. 113-235), enacted and signed into law in December 2014.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The European Capital Markets Union

The European Capital Markets Union

Date: March 11, 2015
Creator: Jackson, James K.
Description: This report briefly discusses the implications of the European Commission's recently drafted proposal for a Capital Markets Union (CMU) to complement its current efforts to create a Banking Union. The CMU is intended to strengthen capital markets in the 28-member European Union (EU) in order to provide a viable alternative to the current bank-centered funding model commonly used by European firms.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Proposals to Eliminate Public Financing of Presidential Campaigns

Proposals to Eliminate Public Financing of Presidential Campaigns

Date: March 3, 2015
Creator: Garrett, R. S.
Description: Congress is faced with determining whether it wants public financing of presidential campaigns to continue and, if so, how. Proposals to curtail the presidential public financing program have been a consistent theme in recent Congresses. This report provides a brief policy overview and raises potential issues for congressional consideration.
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The EMV Chip Card Transition: Background, Status, and Issues for Congress

The EMV Chip Card Transition: Background, Status, and Issues for Congress

Date: February 26, 2015
Creator: Moloney Figliola, Patricia
Description: This report describes the financial harm caused by data breaches and explains how those breaches are carried out. It provides information about the effect of the transition in selected foreign countries. The report also discusses resolved and remaining impediments to completing the EMV ( Europay, MasterCard Visa) transition in the United States and identifies areas of potential congressional interest.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Swiss National Bank's Recent Currency Actions

The Swiss National Bank's Recent Currency Actions

Date: February 11, 2015
Creator: Jackson, James K.
Description: This report presents the foreign exchange value of the Swiss franc relative to the euro and dollar.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Introduction to Financial Services: International Supervision

Introduction to Financial Services: International Supervision

Date: February 10, 2015
Creator: Weiss, Martin A.
Description: This report discusses the financial crisis of 2007-2008 and subsequent global economic turmoil that underscored the interconnectedness of the global financial system as well as its weaknesses. In the wake of the crisis, leaders from the United States and other countries have pursued a wide range of reforms to the international financial regulatory system.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Monetary Policy and the Federal Reserve: Current Policy and Conditions

Monetary Policy and the Federal Reserve: Current Policy and Conditions

Date: February 9, 2015
Creator: Labonte, Marc
Description: This report provides an overview of monetary policy and recent developments. It discusses issues for Congress, including transparency and proposals to change the Fed's mandate, and ends with a brief overview of the Fed's regulatory responsibilities.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department