Banks Secretly Pleased With Wall Street Reform Bill

It'll curb profits, but won't reduce their power
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 24, 2010 9:57 AM CDT
Banks Secretly Pleased With Wall Street Reform Bill
In this April 22, 2010 photo, a Wall Street sign is shown in front of the New York Stock Exchange.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, file)

Despite their public protestations, behind closed doors, Wall Street executives are pretty pleased with how financial reform legislation is shaping up, sources tell the New York Times . “If you talk to anyone privately, there's a sigh of relief,” says one investment banker. “It'll crimp the profit pool initially by 15-20%, but there's no breakup of any institution or onerous new taxes.”

Though their least favorite provisions—like regulations on bank sizes, or caps on credit card rates—died in the Senate, there's still plenty they don't like in the bill, but given the magnitude of their financial crisis screw-ups, they've resigned themselves to some reforms. The health care bill will affect its industry “exponentially more than this legislation is going to change Wall Street,” says one investor and ex-Treasury deputy. “It's not even close.” (Read more Wall Street stories.)

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