Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The CFTC, Dodd-Frank, and LIBOR

Apparently, there's some good use being made of Dodd-Frank despite Republican efforts to block, defang, and defund. According to Ben Protess in "Libor Case Energizes a Wall Street Watchdog," the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) under former Goldman Sachs banker Gary Gensler is aggressively pushing adoption of dozens of new rules under Dodd-Frank.

Protess writes that
"The agency’s revival stems from the wave of new regulation. Dodd-Frank, passed in 2010, greatly expanded the responsibility of the agency, stretching its reach to the dark corners of the $300 trillion derivatives market. Before that, the agency oversaw the $40 trillion futures business."

While it remains to be seen how much further they'll be able to run with the LIBOR investigations beyond the Barclays settlement, a $450 million settlement sure seems a good start. If the CFTC can parlay further investigation and enforcement of LIBOR into an ongoing crack-down empowered by Dodd-Frank that makes the financial industry start shaping up, then maybe -- just maybe -- Dodd-Frank might go down in history as the real crackdown on the financial industry that so many on the left say we've been lacking.

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