Warren Urges Labor Department to Finalize Retirement Rule to Curb Special Favors for Corporate Criminals
“Your proposed amendment to the QPAM Exemption should address these loopholes that have allowed corporate wrongdoers to continue conducting business as usual despite their blatant criminal misdeeds.”
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) sent a letter to the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), urging them to end the coddling of corporate criminals and quickly finalize the proposed amendments to the Qualified Professional Asset Manager (QPAM) Exemption. Senator Warren wrote to EBSA in December 2022 in support of the proposed amendments to strengthen QPAM requirements.
“Finalizing this amendment is an opportunity to send a clear message that powerful financial institutions should not be granted special favors and allowed to manage workers’ retirement accounts if they engage in criminal actions,” wrote Senator Warren. “I urge you to act quickly to finalize the proposed amendment to the QPAM Exemption and put in place strong protections to prevent corporate recidivism.”
EBSA’s proposed amendments to the QPAM Exemption would address loopholes that have historically allowed corporate wrongdoers – such as Credit Suisse Group AG, Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank AG, Citigroup Inc., and JPMorgan Chase – to continue conducting business as usual and manage business retirement accounts even after numerous instances of fraud or abuse. EBSA has delayed the implementation of these amendments and extended or reopened the comment period at the request of corporate interest groups, and during the delay has proposed or granted waivers to several of these asset managers.
“The delay appears to be inconsistent with EBSA’s proposed amendment that should hold big banks accountable for their actions,” wrote Senator Warren. “Instead, I am troubled that EBSA may be continuing to grant favors to the financial industry – which provided no adequate rationale for their requests – by extending the comment period to allow for the special consideration of corporate interests in the rule-making process.”
In the letter, Senator Warren calls out EBSA for continuing to grant favors to the financial industry by extending and re-opening the comment period, and requests them to end their special consideration of corporate interests in the rule-making process and quickly finalize the proposed amendment.
This letter is part of Senator Warren's ongoing efforts to hold giant corporations accountable for criminal, corporate misconduct.
- In December 2022, Senators Elizabeth Warren and Tina Smith (D-Minn.) sent a letter to the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) in support of their new proposed amendments to the Qualified Professional Asset Manager (QPAM) Exemption, which would close loopholes that have allowed financial institutions with long records of criminal misconduct to continue managing workers’ retirements savings.
- In February 2022, Senators Warren and Smith sent a letter to Ali Khawar, the Acting Assistant Secretary at the EBSA in the DOL, raising concerns about EBSA’s proposal to grant a one-year QPAM exemption to Credit Suisse Group AG despite the bank’s impending conviction in an October 2021 judgment for “defrauding U.S. and international investors in the financing of an $850 million loan for a tuna fishing project in Mozambique” and its previous 2014 conviction for “conspiracy to aid and assist U.S. taxpayers in filing false income tax returns and other documents with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).”
- In April 2021, Senators Warren and Smith sent a letter to Deputy Assistant Secretary Timothy Hauser of the EBSA at the DOL opposing regulatory favors under consideration that would allow Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to evade the full consequences of its impending admission of criminal wrongdoing for its subsidiary's role in the Malaysian 1MDB global bribery scandal.
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