President Joe Biden plans to nominate a law professor who has criticized cryptocurrencies and advocated for the government to have a much bigger role in banking to run a top Wall Street regulator.
Saule Omarova, who has said she wants to “end banking as we know it,” will be tapped to run the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency as soon as this week, according to three people familiar with the nomination process who asked not to be named before a White House announcement. The OCC supervises the nation’s biggest lenders including JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc.
She’s also cited the rapid rise of cryptocurrencies as “benefiting mainly the dysfunctional financial system we already have.” Omarova contends that digital tokens threaten to destabilize the economy and are vulnerable to abuse by private firms at the expense of public safeguards.
Omarova didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. The White House declined to comment.
The Biden administration has so far struggled to fill the OCC job. Earlier this year, the White House was forced to drop previous candidates, including a former Treasury official who drew opposition from progressive Democrats. Michael Hsu, a former Fed official, has been running the OCC on an acting basis since May.
If approved by the Senate, Omarova — a Kazakhstan native — would be the first woman to become the full-fledged leader of the OCC, which has only ever had a female serve as comptroller in an acting capacity.
In academic papers, Omarova has supported shifting consumer deposits into digital-dollar accounts at the Fed, something she describes as part of “a blueprint for radically reshaping the basic architecture and dynamics of modern finance.” On Twitter, she has posted comments about her distrust of megabanks.
Liberal groups will likely be pleased by her nomination. The Action Center on Race and the Economy praised her as a potential candidate earlier this year, saying in a statement that she “puts us on a path to correct the wrongdoings of past administrations who have been too cozy with Wall Street executives while ignoring the widening racial and economic disparities in our country.”
— With assistance by Justin Sink
Original Story Found Here