Core Principles for Getting Financial Reform Right

Almost eight years after passage of the landmark Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, an examination of post-crisis reforms is appropriate and could be beneficial. But to succeed, any review effort must stick to certain core principles: It must be grounded in fact, be mindful of policymakers’ historic inclination to weaken regulation in prosperous times to the economy’s later detriment, and recognize that a resilient financial system is fundamental to sustainable economic growth. Although the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s ongoing review, as ordered by President Donald J. Trump, contributes meaningfully to the conversation on financial reform and makes several important suggestions, it risks falling short on meeting these overarching principles. First, the impetus for much of the Treasury Department’s efforts appears to be anchored to a claim that post-crisis reform has dampened economic growth and reduced market liquidity and…

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