Boston.Com: Bailed-out banks lobby hard to stave off limits

Written by admin on September 28th, 2009

Boston.com has an article on the efforts banks are making to avoid regulation.

Easy to read version here:

http://mobile.boston.com/siteserver/site?sid=boston&pid=JuicerHub&targetURL=http://www.boston.com/business/articles/2009/09/27/bailed_out_banks_battle_to_reshape_bills/

Even as the banks say they are reforming themselves to avoid excessive financial risks, they have mounted a pitched battle against new regulations they fear could stifle competition and growth. They are spending millions of dollars, hiring former congressional and White House staffers to make their case, and warning, in the words of the US Chamber of Commerce, that the sweeping financial regulation Frank’s committee is producing “will do more harm than good.”

Already this year, bank lobbyists have helped kill legislation that would have enabled judges to reduce mortgage payments of families that have declared bankruptcy. Most recently, the banks have tried to scuttle President Obama’s proposal for a Consumer Financial Protection Agency, which is designed to prevent them from using deceptive practices to sell mortgages to people who can’t afford them. They also are seeking to shape or weaken rules on commodities trading, executive compensation, and consumer credit cards.

The Wall Street meltdown put the new president and Washington in a mood to put new checks on a capitalist system that many worried had teetered out of control. The banks’ lobbying effort has angered the president, who said in a radio address this month that “lobbyists for big Wall Street banks are hard at work trying to stop reforms that would hold them accountable, and they want to keep things just the way they are.”

Consumer advocates said the bank lobbyists are nearly as powerful as they were before the financial meltdown and the authorization of the Troubled Asset Relief Program, which set aside $700 billion in taxpayers’ money to bail out the financial industry. The government committed hundreds of billions more to other rescues, including $112 billion for insurance giant AIG.

The Best Government Money Can Buy? is a non partisan documentary about the links between lobbying and campaign finance.

 

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