OVERNIGHT FINANCE: Yellen’s next challenge

TOMORROW STARTS TONIGHT: YELLEN TO THE HILL TUESDAY. Jon Hilsenrath for The Wall Street Journal:

“When Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen presented her semiannual testimony to Congress in February the jobless rate was 6.7% and annual inflation was 1.2%. When she returns for two days of testimony Tuesday and Wednesday, she will have a 6.1% jobless rate and 1.8% inflation to report to lawmakers. What matters most in her testimony will be how she explains these developments, particularly the job market’s improvement...

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“[It] poses Ms. Yellen with a challenge. The jobless rate is falling much faster than officials expected... Ms. Yellen has said the Fed’s plans for interest rates depend on how fast the economy converges on its goals of maximum employment and 2% inflation. A slow path to those goals implies a long delay before the Fed’s benchmark short-term rate rises from near zero and a fast path to those goals implies a quicker takeoff.” http://on.wsj.com/1npFfWz.

THIS IS OVERNIGHT FINANCE. Happy Monday. New week, fresh start. Tweet: @kevcirilli; email: kcirilli@thehill.com; and subscribe: click here.

 -- YOU’VE GOTTA SEE THIS - - > PHOTO OF THE DAY: RT @ABCNews: “A lightning bolt strikes the Library of Congress dome, behind the US Capitol - via @ABC News DC.” See the stunning pic: http://bit.ly/1sVoBTG.

Tomorrow is Tuesday...

KEEPING TABS: TRIA. House leadership is whipping on the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), with a vote expected for next week, according to sources familiar with the process.

DAYS UNTIL EX-IM EXPIRES: 78. Tomorrow, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) is hosting a Republican meeting dubbed “Export-Import Bank 101 briefing for Members.” Members are permitted to bring up to one staffer.

Wonder if House Speaker John Boehner will show up? Moving on...

QUOTABLE, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) in an interview with MarketWatch, on what he’ll ask Yellen at tomorrow’s Banking hearing“The $64,000 question is how soon they end the quantitative easing and how quickly will they try to raise [interest] rates?” http://on.mktw.net/W4YOhd.

FOR YOUR RADAR: WHITE HOUSE SAYS IT’LL BLOCK GOP’s IRS BILL, by The Hill’s Bernie Becker: “The White House on Monday threatened to veto a House spending bill that would roll back funding for both the IRS and the Securities and Exchange Commission.” http://bit.ly/1tJZnfb.

KEEPING TABS: HERITAGE TO SCORE HIGHWAY BILL, via Keith Laing: “A pair of influential conservative groups have begun mobilizing against a $10 billion bill to extend federal transportation funding that is scheduled to come up for a vote in the House on Tuesday.

“Heritage Action and Club for Growth said Monday they would both be scoring lawmakers votes on the transportation bill, which was introduced last week.” http://bit.ly/1oB1Xfm.

ON-TAP FOR THE WEEK — My preview for the week ahead in the Financial Services world:http://bit.ly/1tK5hwT.

CFPB FILES SUIT AGAINST ‘DATA MILL,’ via Pete Schroeder: “The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed a lawsuit against a Georgia company it called a ‘debt collection lawsuit mill.’ The [government agency] claimed Monday that the firm, Frederick J. Hanna & Associates, spooks consumers with deceptive court filings and shoddy evidence to ‘intimidate’ them into paying debts they do not actually owe...

“The CFPB said the firm has filed hundreds of thousands of lawsuits on behalf of clients like banks, debt buyers, and credit card issuers. This assembly-line approach led to over 350,000 lawsuits between 2009 and 2013 in Georgia alone.” http://bit.ly/1jspdjk.

-- FLASHBACK: Last month, House Republicans grilled CFPB Director Richard Cordray for the agency’s own data collection practices during a House Financial Services hearing.

“I’m not speaking merely of names, addresses and phone numbers, though the database will certainly include those, but shockingly also people’s Social Security numbers, their race, religion, personal financial information, and even the GPS coordinates of their homes,” Hensarling said at the hearing. “[I’d] fully expect to see [this] in either Russia or China, but I’m appalled to see it in the United States of America.”

SETTLED: ERNST & YOUNG WITH THE FEDS. Ben Goad for the hometown paper: “Financial regulators announced a $4 million settlement Monday with Ernst & Young after the auditing giant was charged with violating lobbying rules.

“The Securities and Exchange Commission charged a subsidiary of the firm, Washington Council EY (WCEY), with lobbying congressional staff on behalf of two audit clients — a violation of auditor independence rules in place to ensure objectivity. The action put Ernst & Young in the position of being an advocate for clients that it also audits, the SEC said.” http://bit.ly/1jJyhAU.

CONNECT WITH THE HILL’s FINANCE TEAM – Write us with tips, suggestions and news:vneedham@thehill.compschroeder@thehill.combbecker@thehill.comkcirilli@thehill.com.

--Follow us on Twitter@VickofTheHill@PeteSchroeder@BernieBecker3; and @kevcirilli.

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