Money Talk: Treasury Department introduces interactive money market fund monitoring tool

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 141 views 

Editor’s note: Each Monday, Talk Business & Politics provides “Money Talk,” a wrap-up of banking and financial news.


The U.S. Office of Financial Research (OFR) has launched the U.S. Money Market Fund Monitor, an online charting tool to help users take a closer look at the portfolios of U.S. money market funds. To develop the tool, the OFR analyzed more than four million records of data about the holdings of about 500 funds over five years.

According to OFC, which is part of the U.S. Treasury Department, money market funds have been popular for decades among investors who want better returns than bank accounts offer, but still with little risk. Since the 1990s, institutional investors have used money market funds as a professional cash management option.

However, a lack of detailed data about fund holdings blocked regulators from seeing risks quickly in 2008. Since then, regulators have begun to require funds to report detailed data about their holdings more frequently. Funds are also required to hold more liquid assets. To view OFR’s new interactive tool, click here.

The Securities and Exchange Commission on July 22 (Friday) announced it won a court-ordered asset freeze to halt an ongoing fraud by two former brokers with disciplinary histories who allegedly raised more than $5 million from investors without using the money as promised.

In an emergency action filed in federal court in Chattanooga, Tenn., the SEC alleges that James Hugh Brennan III and Douglas Albert Dyer sold purported shares in eight similarly named companies to more than 240 investors since 2008 without ever registering the stock as they promised. Instead, according to the SEC’s complaint, Brennan and Dyer transferred investor funds into their personal accounts or those belonging to their wives.

The SEC further alleges that Brennan and Dyer continue to solicit investors while touting their securities industry experience and failing to disclose that Brennan was banned from the brokerage industry and Dyer suspended and fined for executing unauthorized transactions in customers’ accounts.

Americans preparing for retirement expect to save seven years longer than current American retirees did, according to new research by the HSBC Group. However, Americans are similarly underprepared for retirement as global pre-retirees who also cite a seven-year gap.

And despite beginning to save for retirement earlier and working more years than their global counterparts, many working age Americans still don’t think they are saving enough. Almost half (44%) wish they had started to save earlier, and 33% say they should have saved more by putting aside a larger share of income.

HSBC’s latest “Future of Retirement – Generations and Journeys” report surveyed 18,207 people in 17 countries worldwide, including 1,009 respondents in the United States, to understand how individuals can better prepare for their financial security at all stages of life. To view other findings in the report, click here.