Dodd's Push for Regulatory Reform Has Unintended Consequences

by: Richard Bookstaber

I doubt any Senator is more aligned with the financial industry than Christopher Dodd. So it is a testament to his 'country first' mentality that in spite of the limitless pool of campaign contributions that could spring forth from the industry lobby -- and that Dodd would find most helpful in what is shaping up to be a difficult re-election fight -- he is among the most aggressive in pushing financial reform.

Dodd is pushing forward efforts for a wholesale restructuring of Wall Street regulators, to combine the Federal Reserve, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., the Office of Thrift Supervision and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency into one agency. Chuck Schumer, another Senator with a strong constituency in the financial sector, is reported to be a supporter of this approach.

I am shocked to read that this bold step might actually have the unexpected effect of forestalling any meaningful regulation.

This from Bloomberg:

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd’s plan for a single bank regulator may set up a fight with House colleague Barney Frank and the Obama administration and might slow the overhaul of financial rules.

It is incredible how something can backfire in such an unexpected way.