American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
(ARRA) - Commonly referred to as the Stimulus or The Recovery Act, this is the economic stimulus package enacted by
the 111th United States Congress in February 2009. The measures are nominally worth $787 billion. The Act includes federal tax incentives, expansion of unemployment benefits and
other social welfare provisions, and domestic spending in education, health care, and infrastructure, including the energy sector. The Act also includes numerous non-economic recovery related items that were either part of longer-term plans (e.g. a study of the
effectiveness of medical treatments) or desired by Congress (e.g. a limitation on executive compensation in federally aided banks
added by Sen. Dodd and Rep. Frank).
Americans for Financial Reform (AFR) - A coalition of more than 200 civil rights, consumer, labor, business, investor, faith-based, and civic and community groups. Formed in the wake of the 2008 crisis, it is working to lay the foundation for a strong, stable, and ethical financial system.
Better Markets - A nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that promotes the public interest in
financial reform in the domestic and global capital and commodity markets.
Brad DeLong - A conventional economist's persective on the financial crisis.
Budget Sequestration - The Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Deficit Reduction Act of 1985 created a congressional
procedure, now known as sequestration, that draws attention to Federal government's budget. Before the GRHDRA was passed, multiple
appropriation bills would be passed by Congress creating a total sum of government spending that exceeded overall budget goals. Under
sequestration, if this total exceeds the annual Budget Resolution, spending is automatically cut. Sequestration should reduce spending
across the board (affecting all departments and programs by an equal percentage), but Congress has at times exempted certain programs (such
as Social Security). Such exemptions create
greater burdens for those programs that are not exempted. The amount exceeding the budget limit is held back by the Treasury and not
transferred to the agencies specified in the appropriation bills.
Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA): Overview of the U.S. Economy - BEA produces some of the most closely watched economic statistics that influence decisions of government officials, business people, and
individuals. These statistics provide a comprehensive, up-to-date picture of the U.S. economy. The data on this page are drawn from
featured BEA economic accounts
Dodd-Frank Act Stress Tests - The DFA stress tests are a set of forward-looking exercises conducted both by the Federal Reserve and by financial companies regulated by the Federal Reserve.
The stress tests were mandated by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer
Protection Act and are intended to ensure institutions have sufficient capital to absorb losses and support operations during
adverse economic conditions so that they do not pose risks to their communities, other institutions, or the broad economy.
FedSpending - Allows searching of over 88,000 reports from prime recipients of more
than $218 billion in contracts, grants, and loans awarded under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (Recovery Act) between
Feb. 17 and June 30, 2010, as well as additional information on sub-recipients and vendors. Recipients of Recovery Act funds are
required to report quarterly about use of the money they receive. The first reports were made public on Oct. 30, 2009. Fedspending.org uses a dataset that was last updated on August 24, 2010.
Financial Crisis of 2007-2010 - A Wikipedia
article: The financial crisis of 2007 to the present is a crisis triggered by a liquidity shortfall in the United States banking
system. It has resulted in the collapse of large financial institutions, the bailout of banks by national governments, and downturns in
stock markets around the world. In many areas, the housing market has also suffered, resulting in numerous evictions, foreclosures and
prolonged vacancies. It is considered by many economists to be the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. It
contributed to the failure of key businesses, declines in consumer wealth estimated in the hundreds of trillions of U.S. dollars,
substantial financial commitments incurred by governments, and a significant decline in economic activity. Many causes have been suggested,
with varying weight assigned by experts. Both market-based and regulatory solutions have been implemented or are under consideration, while
significant risks remain for the world economy over the 2010-2011 periods.
Financial Stability Board (FSB) - Established to coordinate at the international
level the work of national financial authorities and international standard setting bodies and to develop and promote the implementation of
effective regulatory, supervisory and other financial sector policies in the interest of financial stability. A list of institutions
represented on the FSB can be found here. Also see FSB Publications.
FinancialStability.gov - Features oversight information associated
with the U.S. Treasury Department's Financial Stability Plan.
Le Monde Diplomatique - Provides global coverage of what the alternative globalisation movement is up
to, along with critical discussions of a wide range of social, political, and evironmental and economic issues.
Macroprudential Regulation - The term macroprudential regulation characterizes the approach to financial regulation aimed to mitigate the risk of the financial system as a whole (or "systemic risk"). In the aftermath of the late-2000s financial crisis, there is a growing consensus among policymakers and economic researchers about the need to re-orient the regulatory framework towards a macroprudential perspective. A Wikipedia backgrounder.
Nouriel Roubini's EconoMonitor - Nouriel Roubini, professor of economics at the Stern School of Business at New York University and founder of the RGE Monitor economic research firm, authors this blog.
Also see Roubini's Global Economics.
Paul Krugman - NYT's columnist Krugman's commentary on economic issues,
international trade, and finance.
RealtyTrac - Compiles local and national U.S. data on foreclosures.
Recovery.gov - The U.S. government's official website that provides easy access to data related to Recovery Act spending and allows for the reporting of potential fraud, waste, and abuse.
ReFund America Project - The ReFund America Project, supported by the Roosevelt Institute, tackles the ongoing impact that the financial crisis has had on the financial health of America's cities and provides a dedicated campaign team to help local organizations restore the balance of economic power to Main Street.
SEC Historical Society - Preserves and advances knowledge of the history of financial
regulation through its virtual museum and archive.
Subprime Lending - In finance, subprime lending (also referred to as near-prime, non-prime, and second-chance lending) means making loans to people who may have difficulty maintaining the
repayment schedule. These loans are characterized by higher interest rates and less favorable terms in order to compensate for higher
Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) Information - On October 14,
2008, the U.S. government announced a series of initiatives to strengthen market stability, improve the strength of financial institutions,
and enhance market liquidity. Treasury announced a voluntary Capital Purchase Program to encourage U.S. financial institutions to
build capital to increase the flow of financing to U.S. businesses and consumers and to support the U.S. economy. Under the program,
Treasury will purchase up to $250 billion of senior preferred shares on standardized terms.
U.S. House Financial Services Committee Hearing - The U.S. House Committee on Financial Services, chaired by Congressman Barney Frank (D - Massachusetts), held a hearing on The Future of Financial Services Regulation on October 21, 2008. This links to transcripts of testimony from that hearing as
well as an archived webcast. In their discussions of the need for regulatory changes, a number of those who testified also examined the
causes of the current crisis.
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