Obama meets behind closed doors with financial regulators

By Jessica M. Karmasek | Aug 20, 2013

WASHINGTON (Legal Newsline) -- President Barack Obama met with a group of financial regulators Monday afternoon.

According to a White House "readout" of the meeting -- which was closed-door -- Obama met with: Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray, Federal Housing Finance Agency Acting Director Edward DeMarco, and the chairs of the board of governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the National Credit Union Administration, and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew also attended the meeting.

The President and the regulators discussed the progress made to strengthen the country's financial system and protect consumers, including the ongoing implementation of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.

According to the readout, Obama commended the regulators for their work but stressed the need to "expeditiously finish" implementing the critical remaining portions of the reform to prevent the type of financial harm that led to the so-called Great Recession.

Earlier this month, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of certain provisions of the Dodd-Frank reform.

Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle for the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia said in a memorandum opinion Aug. 1 that the plaintiffs -- a small Texas bank, two conservative advocacy groups and 11 states -- didn't show that the regulatory overhaul has had an impact on them.

Also at the meeting Monday, the President discussed the housing market. In particular, he addressed the need for a more simplified, and certain, housing finance system that better serves middle class families.

The group also discussed opportunities to continue interagency coordination, through the Financial Stability Oversight Council chaired by Lew, and the need to remain "responsive" to new risks in the financial system.

According to the readout, the regulators also talked about the challenges posed by the current budget environment to their efforts in strengthening the financial system and protecting consumers, and the importance of providing adequate funding for independent regulatory agencies to achieve their core missions.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at jessica@legalnewsline.com.

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