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OCC Head Looks to Loosen Financial Regulations

The acting head of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency wants to take a closer look at financial regulations—a move that could lead to the loosening of some of those rules.

Keith Noreika, who recently took over for Thomas Curry, told his subordinates in an email that it is a “good time to take stock” of Dodd-Frank rules because nearly a decade had passed since the financial crash. “Regulation doesn’t work when it chokes investment, and banks can’t fulfill their public purpose if they can’t support their local customers, business and communities,” wrote Noreika.

Dodd-Frank and the CFPB have gained renewed attention from lawmakers and officials during the first months of the Trump Administration. For instance, earlier this month legislation that would overhaul the CFPB and end taxpayer-funded bailouts of large financial institutions, among other mandates, made it out of the House Financial Services Committee. The Financial CHOICE Act of 2017 (HR 10), which was reintroduced last month by U.S. Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), won approval in a 34-26 vote along party lines. The bill would also repeal the Durbin Amendment.

In February, President Trump signed an executive order that directed the U.S. Secretary of the Treasury to meet with other top regulatory leaders and deliver a report on existing financial regulations, including the Dodd-Frank Act—one of the main targets of criticism by Trump over what he has deemed overly restrictive financial regulation that has been a drag on the economy.

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