Update: State of the reform bill
Congress seems to be working toward a common proposal, making it more likely that historic financial reform legislation will be passed sooner rather than later.
A lot of issues have been decided: The need for a consumer watchdog within the Federal Reserve Board, the need to permanently exempt non-accelerated filers from Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, heightened capital standards, wider audits of the Fed, a study of credit rating reform potentially followed by a new rating board, registration by hedge funds and private equity funds, and more.
Much of this, the banking industry can live with. The big remaining stumbling blocks are the Volcker Rule and the rule reforming OTC derivatives trading, and we're seeing bank lobbyists pulling out the stops. Banks are still lobbying for a weaker version of the Volcker Rule that would allow investment in hedge funds and private equity funds. The OTC derivatives also seems to be nearing resolution, as a watered down version of the Blanche Lincoln proposal to force banks to spin off swaps units, seems to have gained favor.
In general banks have succeeded in watering down many proposals in the push for a combined bill.
- here's the article