‘SPECTACULAR BETRAYAL’ AS TRUMP ROLLS BACK WALL STREET REGULATIONS

Feb 3, 2017 by

By Deirdre Fulton / Common Dreams   VIA TRUTHDIG

  New York’s Wall Street. (Dave Center / CC 2.0)

President Donald Trump is set to hand the U.S. economy “back over to Wall Street” on Friday, with a regulatory rollback that critics say could put consumers and the financial system at risk.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Trump plans to sign executive orders Friday “establish[ing] a framework for scaling back the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial-overhaul law” and rolling back an Obama-era regulation requiring advisers on retirement accounts to work in the best interests of their clients. That rule was set to go into effect in April.

Trump plans to sign the orders surrounded by bank CEOs.

“The Wall Street bankers against whom Trump ran are making policy now,” said Robert Weissman, president of watchdog group Public Citizen.

“The worst job-destroying economic crisis since the Great Depression was directly caused by deregulation and regulatory failure,” he said. “Now the president who ran on a jobs-creation platform announces that he aims to slash the modest measures put in place to prevent a recurrence of the crisis. If Trump succeeds in rolling back Dodd-Frank rules he will rush the country straightforward into another job-killing financial crisis. This may be the most spectacular betrayal yet by the president of his voters, as he shunts aside their concerns and pushes forward the agenda of his cronies and the well-connected.”

Furthermore, White House National Economic Council director Gary Cohn, who formerly served as president of Goldman Sachs, told the Journal that Friday’s memoranda were merely “a table setter for a bunch of stuff that is coming.”

Also in the administration’s crosshairs are the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC)—which has the ability to designate and rein in giant financial institutions that are “systemically important” to the global economy—and the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB), which has cracked down on predatory payday lenders; set new standards for the mortgage market; and recovered and sent back billions of dollars for consumers harmed by illegal practices of credit card companies, banks, and debt collectors. Both entities were established by Dodd-Frank.

Bloomberg described the orders as “the most aggressive steps yet by Trump to loosen regulations in the financial services industry and come after he has sought to stock his administration with veterans of the industry in key positions.”

In addition to Cohn, Trump’s cabinet includes Goldman alums Steven Mnuchin, the nominee for treasury secretary, and chief strategist Steve Bannon, who worked at the institution in the 1980s. Wall Street lawyer Jay Clayton, Trump’s pick to run the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), also has ties to Goldman Sachs.

Former Wall Street worker Alexis Goldstein laid out the implications of Trump’s orders in a series of tweets on Friday:

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