Judge: Govt wrongly ignored costs to MetLife of threat tag

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge says the government acted unreasonably by ignoring the costs to MetLife of being targeted for stricter supervision as a potential threat to the financial system.

U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer says she decided to strike the government's labeling of MetLife because it was "arbitrary and capricious." The federal regulators who make up the Financial Stability Oversight Council failed to consider possible financial harm to the insurance giant from the action, backtracking on their own policy, Collyer wrote.

Her opinion, which had been kept under seal, was made public Thursday. In a ruling last Wednesday, Collyer removed the council's labeling of MetLife Inc. as "systemically important" — requiring closer oversight.

Her ruling dealt a setback to the government's policy for preventing another financial crisis using new legal tools.