September 8, 2017 — Nine years ago this month, the US sub-prime mortgage crisis morphed into a severe global financial crisis. Many Americans across the political spectrum angrily demanded financial reform, by which they meant a tightening of financial regulation. Indeed, important reforms were subsequently enacted, in particular the 2010 Dodd-Frank bill.
Today, those reforms are increasingly under assault. Most recently, the Trump Administration is proposing a roll-back of regulation of banks as well as of other financial institutions. The recent decisions of Fed Governors Stan Fischer and Dan Tarullo to retire are also worrisome signs. Continue reading
SINGAPORE (May 30, 2017)– At the end of the first quarter, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, American consumer debt for the first time exceeded its previous peak (in dollars). That peak was in the 3rd quarter of 2008, just as the global financial crisis hit. Although car loans and student debt have been rising especially rapidly, housing debt remains more than 2/3 of the total ($8.6 trillion out of $12.7 trillion). Continue reading
(Feb.24, 2017) The quantity of financial regulation is not quite as important as the quality. One must get the details right. The case of the US “fiduciary rule” strongly suggests that President Trump will not get the details right. Continue reading