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October 8, 2015

Clinton Offers Incremental Vision of Wall Street Reform

“WASHINGTON — Democratic presidential favorite Hillary Clinton laid out a plan Thursday to rein in the excesses of the U.S. financial system, emphasizing the need to prosecute Wall Street executives for wrongdoing, tighten Dodd-Frank Act rules and boost funding for financial regulators.

“But the plan appears to move only incrementally beyond reforms already put in place by the Obama administration and is still a far cry from the more daring proposals of her most formidable Democratic competitor, Sen. Bernie Sanders, who has called for a wholesale restructuring of the biggest banks.

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“Dennis Kelleher, president of the public interest organization Better Markets, said that his initial impression of Clinton’s proposal was positive, particularly in enunciating a need for more restrictions on high frequency trading and making banks less complex.

“But he said the proposal appears to rely too heavily on regulators to enact the changes she envisions, especially when regulators have had five years to enact Dodd-Frank and key provisions remain incomplete. Even so, he said, most of the changes that Clinton favors could be enacted with existing authority — such as living wills — if only regulators had the fortitude to exercise it.

“You simply cannot place the protection of the American people from a devastating financial crash in the hands of regulators,” Kelleher said. “On the other hand … if you actually implemented and used all of the powers and authority in Dodd-Frank today, you could actually end ‘too big to fail.’ “

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Read the full American Banker article by John Heltman here

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