Financial Regulatory Forum

ANALYSIS – Obama tackles Wall Street reform in next big push

By Caren Bohan

WASHINGTON, March 25 (Reuters) – Fresh from his victory on landmark healthcare legislation, U.S. President Barack Obama is ready to take on Wall Street.

In the same week Obama signed into law his sweeping healthcare plan, his administration began a publicity blitz to sell his proposal to reshape the financial regulatory system.

Obama held a strategy session on Wednesday with two Democrats, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd and House of Representatives Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank, who are leading the effort to pass the plan in Congress.

Democrats hope the healthcare win will lend momentum to the push on financial reform, an issue the White House hopes will be a political winner as the party seeks to stave off potential losses in the November congressional elections.

“The good news is that, whereas the Republican message machine managed to convince a lot of Americans that the healthcare bill was bad for them, I think they will have a harder time with the financial reform,” said Princeton University professor Alan Blinder. “Rightly or wrongly everybody hates Wall Street and the banks right now.”

SCENARIOS-How U.S. financial regulation fight might play out

March 23 (Reuters) – The financial regulation debate has a long way to go in the U.S. Congress, with the action shifting to the full Senate and big headlines unlikely until April.

The Senate Banking Committee approved a sweeping Democratic bill by a party-line vote on Monday. That bill is now headed for the Senate floor, but not before lawmakers try again to hash out a bipartisan deal in closed-door negotiations.

With Congress adjourning on Friday for a two-week holiday break, the off-line financial reform talks probably will not produce results before lawmakers return next month.

BREAKINGVIEWS-U.S. financial reform process takes risky turn

– The author is a Reuters Breakingviews columnist. The opinions expressed are his own –

By James Pethokoukis

WASHINGTON, March 23 (Reuters Breakingviews) – The effort to reform the U.S. financial regulatory system was supposed to show the Senate working more or less as intended — bipartisan up to a point, and largely non-confrontational. But it’s starting to follow the healthcare bill’s more contentious path.

Hundreds of Republican and Democratic amendments to the legislation authored by Democrat Chris Dodd, the panel’s chairman, were supposed to be hashed out by the relatively expert Senate Banking Committee this week. Instead, Republicans yanked their proposed changes, and the bill was approved with just Democratic support. Now it will be hashed out on the Senate floor. Democrats will need to bring at least one Republican across the aisle to hit the 60 votes needed to be certain of passage.

Talks resume in U.S. Senate on financial reform

WASHINGTON, Feb 11 (Reuters) – In an unusual move that cuts a senior Republican out of the loop, bipartisan U.S. Senate negotiations have resumed on financial regulation reform, the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee said on Thursday.

Committee chairman Christopher Dodd, a Democrat, said in a statement that he has begun talks on legislation with Bob Corker, a first-term Republican member of the panel handling a sweeping regulatory overhaul package.

Just six days ago, Dodd said he had hit an impasse with Senator Richard Shelby, the committee’s top Republican, in talks under way for more than a year.

Financial reform talks break down in U.S. Senate

Dodd and Shelby, in happier times

Dodd and Shelby, in happier times

By Kevin Drawbaugh and Kim Dixon

WASHINGTON, Feb 5 (Reuters) – Bipartisan efforts to tighten U.S. financial regulation ground to a halt in the Senate on Friday, leaving Democrats to proceed on their own and painting Republicans into an uncomfortable political corner.

After months of public debate and closed-door talks, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd, chief negotiator for the Democrats, said he is at an impasse with his Republican counterpart, Senator Richard Shelby.

Dodd said in a statement he will begin drafting new legislation to be considered later this month.

Key U.S. senators see deal on regulatory reform

   WASHINGTON, Dec 23 (Reuters) – The top Democrat and Republican on the U.S. Senate Banking Committee said on Wednesday they hoped to resolve their differences on financial regulatory reforms before the Senate reconvenes in January.

“For the last few weeks we, and other members of the Banking Committee, have been engaged in serious negotiations, with the goal of producing a bill that strengthens our regulatory structure and makes our economy more secure,” Senators Christopher Dodd and Richard Shelby said in a joint statement.

“We have made meaningful progress and we hope to resolve the remaining issues before we reconvene in January,” they said.

U.S. Treasury chief Geithner, under fire, defends AIG bailout

FINANCIAL-REGULATION/GEITHNER By David Lawder and Emily Kaiser
WASHINGTON, Nov 19 (Reuters) – U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner defended on Thursday the costly bailout of AIG and urged swift regulatory reform to safeguard the economy from the failure of big financial firms.
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