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Wall Street Roundup: Bankers lobby for themselves. Lehman warnings.

March 19, 2010 |  6:56 am

Lehman warnings. There is mounting evidence that federal regulators ignored warnings about the accounting tricks at Lehman Brothers, which were detailed in a recent report about the bankrupt investment bank. The Financial Times is reporting that Merrill Lynch employees went to regulators, and were ignored, in the months before Lehman's collapse.

The Fed's other interest rate. Although the Federal Reserve decided earlier this week to hold its key lending rate steady, many economists are predicting that another rate, the Fed's discount rate, is likely to rise in the near future. The discount rate is what the Fed charges member banks for direct loans.  

Bankers go to work in Washington. The American Bankers Assn. happens to have its annual meeting in Washington at the same time that Congress is considering major financial reform legislation. The bankers are taking advantage of this by doing some very personal lobbying.

The SEC's analyst problem. The Wall Street Journal is continuing to hammer away at the SEC's decision to work with banks to try to weaken a 2003 settlement. That settlement was designed to do away with problematic cooperation between research analysts and investment bankers at big financial firms. 

--Nathaniel Popper