Congressional Research Service Reports - 1,182 Matching Results

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Financial Services and General Government (FSGG): FY2008 Appropriations

Description: This report is a guide to a new appropriations bill that Congress is considering for the first time this year. It is designed to supplement the information provided by the House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittees on Financial Services and General Government. It summarizes the status of the bill, its scope, major issues, funding levels, and related congressional activity.
Date: July 20, 2007
Creator: Hatch, Garrett L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Student Loans, Student Aid, and FY2008 Budget Reconciliation

Description: This report reviews and briefly describes the major proposals that would change the federal student loan programs to achieve savings in mandatory spending and the proposals that would enhance student aid benefits or result in changes to existing federal student aid programs.
Date: July 18, 2007
Creator: Stoll, Adam; Smole, David P. & Mercer, Charmaine
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Risk Management and Critical Infrastructure Protection: Assessing, Integrating, and Managing Threats, Vulnerabilities and Consequences

Description: This report is meant to support congressional oversight by discussing, in more detail, what this task entails and issues that need to be addressed. In particular, the report defines terms (e.g., threat, vulnerability, and risk), discusses how they fit together in a systematic analysis, describes processes and techniques that have been used to assess them, and discusses how the results of that analysis can inform resource allocation and policy.
Date: July 17, 2007
Creator: Moteff, John
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security Administration: Administrative Budget Issues

Description: The Social Security Administration (SSA) administers the Social Security program (Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance, or OASDI) and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, and provides administrative support to Medicare and several other federal programs. Total SSA spending in FY2006 was about $597 billion, 98% of which was mandatory spending on benefit payments. This report focuses on SSA’s spending for administrative expenses, which is discretionary and amounts to 2% of SSA’s total spending. This funding is provided in the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies appropriations bill.
Date: July 17, 2007
Creator: Romig, Kathleen
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Student Loans, Student Aid, and FY2008 Budget Reconciliation

Description: This report reviews and briefly describes the major changes proposed in H.R. 2669 to federal student loan and other federal student aid programs that would achieve savings in mandatory spending or that would result in changes to existing federal student aid programs.
Date: July 6, 2007
Creator: Stoll, Adam; Smole, David P. & Mercer, Charmaine
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hedge Funds: Should They Be Regulated?

Description: In view of the growing impact of hedge funds on a variety of financial markets, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in October 2004 adopted a regulation that requires hedge funds to register as investment advisers, disclose basic information about their operations, and open their books for inspection. The regulation took effect in February 2006, but on June 23, 2006, a court challenge was upheld and the rule was vacated. S. 1402 and H.R. 2586 would reinstate the SEC's authority. H.R. 2683 would require defined benefit pension plans to disclose investments in hedge funds. In December 2006, the SEC proposed raising the "accredited investor" standard - to be permitted to invest in hedge funds, an investor would need $2.5 million in assets, instead of $1 million.
Date: July 2, 2007
Creator: Jickling, Mark
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

China’s Currency: Economic Issues and Options for U.S. Trade Policy

Description: The continued rise in China’s trade surplus with the United States and the world, and complaints from U.S. manufacturing firms and workers over the competitive challenges posed by Chinese imports have led several Members to call for a more aggressive U.S. stance against certain Chinese trade policies they deem to be unfair. This report examines China's currency policy its implications.
Date: June 28, 2007
Creator: Morrison, Wayne M. & Labonte, Marc
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pension Funds Investing in Hedge Funds

Description: The proportion of U.S. corporate-defined benefit pension funds investing in hedge funds has increased to 24% in 2006, up from 19% in 2004 and 12% in 2000. Although statistics vary, total corporate pension fund assets allocated to hedge funds in 2006 was 2.1%. Because of hedge funds’ risky nature, rapid growth, lack of oversight, and recent losses, some wonder if they are appropriate investments for workers’ retirement funds. This report discusses concerns regarding hedge funds and examines possible policy options.
Date: June 15, 2007
Creator: Klunk, William
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security Administration: Administrative Budget Issues

Description: The Social Security Administration (SSA) administers the Social Security program (Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance, or OASDI) and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program, and provides administrative support to Medicare and several other federal programs. Total SSA spending in FY2006 was about $597 billion, 98% of which was mandatory spending on benefit payments. This report focuses on SSA’s spending for administrative expenses, which is discretionary and amounts to 2% of SSA’s total spending. This funding is provided in the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies appropriations bill.
Date: June 13, 2007
Creator: Romig, Kathleen
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campus-Based Student Financial Aid Programs Under the Higher Education Act

Description: This report begins by providing a brief description of each of the campus-based programs, including the terms under which financial aid is awarded to students and the procedures under which federal funds are allocated to institutions for that purpose. It then provides historical information on federal funds appropriated for each of the programs, an analysis of the number and types of students served, and selected program statistics.
Date: May 14, 2007
Creator: Smole, David P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Subprime Mortgages: Primer on Current Lending and Foreclosure Issues

Description: This report discusses the issue of subprime mortgages, which are loans extended to borrowers with weak credit profiles. Subprime mortgages entail higher risk of delinquency and default. Recent increases in subprime borrower foreclosures and lender bankruptcies have prompted concerns that some lenders’ underwriting guidelines are too loose and that some borrowers may not have fully understood the risks of the mortgage products they chose. Regulatory agencies are revisiting the guidance they provide lenders and are reevaluating required disclosures to consumers. In addition, Congress is holding hearings on the subject and may consider consumer protection legislation.
Date: March 19, 2007
Creator: Murphy, Edward Vincent
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agricultural Credit: Institutions and Issues

Description: The federal government has a long history of providing credit assistance to farmers by issuing direct loans and guarantees, and creating rural lending institutions. These institutions include the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which makes or guarantees loans to farmers who cannot qualify at other lenders, and the Farm Credit System (FCS), which is a network of borrower-owned lending institutions operating as a government-sponsored enterprise. This report discusses legislation regarding this credit assistance expected in the the 110th Congress. Appropriators will consider funding for FSA’s farm loan programs, and the agriculture committees may consider changes to FSA and FCS lending programs. The 2007 farm bill is expected to be the venue for many of the authorizing issues, although stand-alone legislation may be used for extensive reforms.
Date: March 8, 2007
Creator: Monke, Jim
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Selected International Depreciation Rates by Asset and Country

Description: The depreciation provisions in the U.S. tax system are of recurring interest to Congress. More than 100 bills were introduced in the 109th Congress that addressed some aspect of depreciation. Concerns about the U.S. depreciation system tend to begin with the criticism that updates to the system have not kept pace with technological advancements of the assets for which it is utilized to account. This report provides information on the depreciation systems of selected European Union countries (France, Germany, Ireland, Spain, and the United Kingdom) by presenting depreciation rates for buildings; computers; expensable assets; motor vehicles; patents; plant, equipment, machinery, and tools; and software.
Date: January 30, 2007
Creator: Mast, Brent W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Description: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers several permanently authorized programs to help farmers recover financially from a natural disaster, including federal crop insurance, the non-insured assistance program and emergency disaster loans. In recent years, Congress frequently has made supplemental financial assistance available to farmers and ranchers on an ad-hoc basis, most notably in the form of direct crop disaster payments and emergency livestock assistance. Congress provided an estimated $3.1 billion of such assistance in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2003 (P.L. 108-7) for 2001 and 2002 crop and livestock losses. Some farm groups would like to see similar assistance provided for 2003 losses, particularly in regions of the Midwest and West that have experienced prolonged drought conditions. To date, no ad-hoc assistance has been made available for 2003 losses.
Date: October 6, 2006
Creator: Chite, Ralph M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)

Description: The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) is an interagency committee that serves the President in overseeing the national security implications of foreign investment in the economy. Since it was established by an Executive Order of President Ford in 1975, the committee has operated in relative obscurity.1 According to a Treasury Department memorandum, the Committee originally was established in order to placate Congress, which had grown concerned over the rapid increase in Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) investments in American portfolio assets (Treasury securities, corporate stocks and bonds), and to respond to concerns of some that much of the OPEC investments were being driven by political, rather than by economic, motives.
Date: July 28, 2006
Creator: Jackson, James K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Exon-Florio National Security Test for Foreign Investment

Description: The proposed acquisition of major operations in six major U.S. ports by Dubai Ports World and of Unocal by the China National Offshore Oil Corporation sparked intense concerns among some Members of Congress and the public and has reignited the debate over what role foreign acquisitions play in U.S. national security. The United States actively promotes internationally the national treatment of foreign firms. Several Members of Congress have introduced various measures during the 2nd Session of the 109th Congress that can be grouped into four major areas: those that deal specifically with the proposed Dubai Ports World acquisition; those that focus more generally on foreign ownership of U.S. ports; those that would amend the CFIUS process; and those that would amend the Exon-Florio process.
Date: July 28, 2006
Creator: Jackson, James K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Exon-Florio National Security Test for Foreign Investment

Description: The proposed acquisition of major operations in six major U.S. ports by Dubai Ports World and of Unocal by the China National Offshore Oil Corporation sparked intense concerns among some Members of Congress and the public and has reignited the debate over what role foreign acquisitions play in U.S. national security. The United States actively promotes internationally the national treatment of foreign firms. Several Members of Congress have introduced various measures during the 2nd Session of the 109th Congress that can be grouped into four major areas: those that deal specifically with the proposed Dubai Ports World acquisition; those that focus more generally on foreign ownership of U.S. ports; those that would amend the CFIUS process; and those that would amend the Exon-Florio process.
Date: July 28, 2006
Creator: Jackson, James K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Exon-Florio National Security Test for Foreign Investment

Description: The United States actively promotes internationally the national treatment of foreign firms. Some Members of Congress and others are concerned with this policy, however, particularly with how it applies to allowing government-owned companies unlimited access to the Nation's industrial base. Much of this debate focuses on the activities of a relatively obscure committee, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) and the Exon-Florio provision, which gives the President broad powers to block certain types of foreign investment. Several Members of Congress have introduced various measures during the 2nd Session of the 109th Congress regarding this ongoing policy debate.
Date: July 28, 2006
Creator: Jackson, James K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department