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Bankruptcy News for Albany County, NY

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February 2018 Headlines

Here's what we're reading in February 2018.

America's consumer debt keeps skyrocketing 

Business Insider reports on how consumers have piled on debt since the election. Consumer debt now 45% higher than it was at the economic bust in 2008.

Trump Administration Plans to Defang Consumer Protection Watchdog

NPR reports on how the CFPB has been taken over by those who would rather protect banks than consumers.

How the consumer protection agency is being curtailed by the Trump administration

here’s an agency that’s supposed to be policing, enforcing, being a watchdog over the financial industry, and Mick Mulvaney is now saying, well, we’re going to use this agency to deregulate parts of this industry.


Daily News on Bankruptcy


New York Times 
"Credit" Topic Page

A steady diet of the NYT  articles on bankruptcy and credit

NY Times "Personal Bankruptcies" News 

A steady diet of  NYT articles on personal bankruptcy . 

CreditSlips Blog

Active discussion of news of the day by bankruptcy law professors and lawyers. A good source of links to newsworthy events in politics and finance that affect the world of credit and bankruptcy.

BankruptcyProf Blog

Another discussion by law professors. Good source for caselaw and rules developments, as well as legislation.

NACBA.org bankruptcy news

News stories as tracked by the website of the National Association for Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys.

InsideARM.com

An excellent, well-organized archive of timely articles on economic data affecting the debt and credit industry. The link below is for Credit Card news, but be sure to hover your cursor over the News & Analysis link for a list of other areas you can search: 

Other Free Audio/Video

Bankrupt: Maxed Out in America

This is a one-hour radio documentary and website about bankruptcy in america from American RadioWorks and Marketplace from American Public Radio

See also: "The boom in going bust" -- a report by Marketplace reporter Chris Farrell on a day in bankruptcy court. 

This American Life: The Giant Pool of Money

This AmericanLife/NPR present one of the clearest explanations of how the housing crisis happened. One hour long.

See also: this update of the origional episode.

Media Reports on How the Credit Card Industry Reaps Billions in Profits From Distressed Debtors

Feeling bad about your bankruptcy? 

Don't.

The banking industry has made a calculated science of reaping billions of profits from distressed debtors. By casting a wide net to grant credit to everyone, the real "sweet spot" for banks is the distressed debtor that is caught a never ending cycle of penalties, fees, and exorbitant interest rates (that would have been illegal a generation ago)

NY Times/PBS Frontline: 
The Secret History of the Credit Card

The issues covered in this 2004 documentary are still current, and worth watching. It's an excellent recounting by PBS and The New York Times of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling almost 20 years ago opened the door to abusive lending practices and the rise of the modern credit card industry. After watching this, you'll understand why your credit card company is probably based in South Dakota or Delaware.
PBS: Frontline Video and Articles
NY Times: Articles

Bill Moyers on the social impact of the mortgage meltdown

How unregulated subprime lending destroyed the housing stock of Cleveland

Excellent report on how lack of regulation allowed "usury" to no longer be a crime, and allowed predatory lenders to sell financial snake-oil all without regulation. 

Describes how the inevitable logic of human greed, left unregulated, led banks to make billions by peddling financial snake-oil to naive, cash strapped consumers to sign the equity in their their paid-for houses as collateral for loans they would never be able to pay.... And now whole neighborhoods lie abandoned and falling into ruin, resulting in further loss of wealth base in communities that can ill affford it.

So much for the invisible hand....

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Selected Articles about When Bankruptcy is Appropriate

A lot has been written lately about whether bankruptcy makes sense for people, in light of the economic downturn, including these articles:

 

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Politics & Legislation

Don't like the law? Change it! Vote the rascals out. 

Click here to see how your Senator voted on bankruptcy "reform" (BAPCPA) in 2005, and  how your Representative voted.

Latest on mortgage modification legislation

See National Consumer Law Center, bankruptcy news page.

And here's a BusinessWeek article and blog entry about how credit card disputes that go to arbitration rule for the credit card company 99.9% of the time.

Wall Street Journal reports on problems with debt settlement companies

(October 15, 2008) Read about people who waste lots of money and regret not filing bankruptcy in the first place... more...

Stephen Colbert on Payday Lending Regulation

"The Payday Loan Reform Act drags the payday loan industry out of the darkness and into the anemic firefly flicker of nominal oversight. (04:16)"

Keeping track of the influence of money in Congress

http://www.rootstrikers.org

Started by Stanford Law professor Lawrence Lessig.

http://www.sunlightfoundation.com/

http://www.maplight.org/

 

Bankruptcy & the Credit Bubble

Numbers to Watch & Where to Find Them

You can follow the credit bubble as it pops and splatters its way through our financial institutions at http://www.federalreserve.gov/releases, where the Federal Reserve posts monthly reports that track the effects of the credit crisis on America's financial infrastructure.

If the flow of money is the fuel of American capitalism, then these reports are the fuel gauges. The Fed's unglamorous reports give us hard data on how much money is coursing through the American economy.

You can get other important numbers and information from non-governmental sources, including: