Slow progress has been made in the past three years on instituting “critical” parts of the Dodd-Frank Act, according to recent comments by the Obama Administration. President Obama voiced his frustrations with the slow progress of financial overhaul regulations on Monday in a closed-door meeting with federal regulators and lawmakers. He particularly emphasized the need to avoid another financial collapse like 2008, when the market crashed, in part, from risky mortgage lending that created the “housing bubble” in 2006 and 2007.
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (or the Dodd-Frank Act) served as a decisive legislative effort to overhaul current financial practices in the marketplace when it was passed into law in 2010. Since that time, however, federal regulatory agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Federal Reserve have had difficulty in implementing rules within the Act, both internally within agencies and “in the face of opposition from lobbyists for banks that opposed the law.” This push-back from banks continues to underlie the pervasive governmental and consumer aversion to institutions that become “too big to fail.” In addition to this opposition, the Administration emphasized in regulatory meetings that the lack of any efforts to institute the Volcker Rule is especially disconcerting, which would “prohibit banks from risking institutional money in certain speculative investments.” While the meeting likely reiterated goals for institutional adoption of the Act, the full implementation of the Act and its rules may not fully be realized well into the future.
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