Republican U.S. Sen Shelby sets down financial reform markers

November 2, 2009

U.S. Sen Richard Shelby (R-AL) makes a point while taking questions at the Reuters Financial Regulation Summit  in Washington, April 24, 2009. REUTERS/Stelios Varias (UNITED STATES POLITICS BUSINESS)   WASHINGTON, Nov 2 (Reuters) – The top Republican on the U.S. Senate Banking Committee wants a bipartisan deal on financial regulation reform, but sees numerous basic issues as still open to debate, an aide told Reuters on Monday.

For instance, Senator Richard Shelby supports stronger consumer protections “where appropriate, but believes the creation of a stand-alone agency is neither necessary nor wise,” said his spokesman Jonathan Graffeo.

The Obama administration and congressional Democrats are proposing setting up a Consumer Financial Protection Agency to regulate mortgages, credit cards and other financial products.

In addition, Shelby sees more room for debate on key proposed reforms including derivatives regulation, overseeing systemic risk, and banking supervision, Graffeo said.

Senator Christopher Dodd, the Democratic chairman of the banking committee, was expected to unveil draft financial reform legislation soon, possibly this week, analysts said.

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