Pennsylvania + Wall


Pennsylvania + Wall provides commentary on a broad range of current financial, economic and regulatory reform topics. The views expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the position of SIFMA.

October 13, 2016

The Intended and Unintended Consequences for End Users of Post-Crisis Financial Regulation

By Randy Snook

Regulations implemented in the wake of the financial crisis have had a number of consequences - both intended and unintended - on consumers, households, and venture capital firms, ranging from limited access to credit and mortgages to disrupting supply chains, according to analysts and end users who spoke at SIFMA's Annual Meeting, The Capital Markets Conference.

The verdict on the Dodd-Frank financial regulations is mixed, said Justin Schardin, director of the Financial Regulatory Reform Initiative at the Bipartisan Policy Center. "Our goal here is to find ways to improve regulation that's out there… But whenever you make change of this kind of magnitude, there's no way to escape unintended consequences," he argued.

Schardin, who recently coauthored a report analyzing the post-crisis financial regulatory structure, said there are a few common and opposing assessments of the reform..... Read more...

October 13, 2016

Greening the Financial System: From Momentum to Transformation

By David Strongin

Green Finance

Momentum is building to align the financial system to support sustainable development and economic growth. In the last six months, a range of market and policy actions have been taken that support the growth of green finance such as:

  • The green bond market is booming, fueled by investor demand, new regulations and strategic investment needs, as well as China’s entry into the market.
  • National leadership continues to be a driving force, e.g. China adopting a ground-breaking plan to green its financial system; EU committing to a strategic review of sustainable finance.
  • UN Environment has identified over 200 innovative policy and regulatory measures that have been taken across 60 countries to link finance and sustainability.
  • G20 Leaders issued the first communiqué that includes green finance, and the Financial Stability Board is exploring climate risks across the financial system.
  • Sustainability is becoming a competitiveness factor for some of the world’s financial centers, including Hong Kong, Nairobi, London, and Paris.

Momentum is to be applauded, but is not enough to deliver financing to meet the climate commitments under the Paris Agreement, which can also lead to additional economic growth. Further policy and market reform is necessary to bring green finance into the mainstream of the financial infrastructure.
On Friday, October 7, 2016, organizations from around the globe met in Washington, DC before the IMF and World Bank annual meetings to discuss ways to meet this transformational challenge..... Read more...

October 12, 2016

Pushing Harmonisation

This post was originally published in the print edition of IFLR on September 26, 2016.

The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) is the voice of the US securities industry while the Global Financial Markets Association (GFMA) brings together three of the world's biggest financial trade associations to address the global regulatory agenda.

Unsurprisingly then, SIFMA's managing director of international policy & advocacy, Peter Matheson, and GFMA's executive director, David Strongin, are perfectly placed to tackle the regulatory initiatives affecting cross-border finance.

Here they discuss global regulatory coherence since 2009 and the challenges such cooperation faces, post-Brexit uncertainty and more. .... Read more...

October 03, 2016

Taking Stock: Regulatory Calibration in Today’s Complex Markets

By Ira D. Hammerman

Financial thought leaders gathered at SIFMA's 2016 Annual Meeting, The Capital Markets Conference, to discuss regulatory calibration. The moderator, Sandra O'Connor, Chief Regulatory Affairs Officer at JPMorgan Chase & Co., kicked off the discussion with a question: "Have we earned the right to take stock of where we are on global and local regulatory procedures?" All panelists answered in the affirmative.

The panelists discussed regulatory calibration, as well as how to achieve an efficient balance of regulation and risk.

"Banks make a substantial contribution to the vitality of the US economy. The relationship of regulation and capital to growth is subtle and complex," said Donald Kohn, Senior Fellow of Economic Studies at the Brookings Institution. "We can't let the current state of the economy interfere with stock-taking."

....

October 03, 2016

Facts and Studies: Understanding the Impact of Regulation on Economic Growth

The United States capital markets are the deepest – most liquid markets in the world. They provide essential financing for new business development which leads to job creation and innovation and to infrastructure projects which are critical to future growth and productivity. 

The reports in this compendium underpin the importance of U.S. capital markets in the U.S. and global economies and analyze the current state and interaction of market structure, regulation and economic growth. There is broad consensus that recent regulatory reforms, undertaken both domestically and internationally, have made markets more resilient. However, these reforms have a real cost to end-users, economic growth, jobs and productivity..... Read more...

September 30, 2016

Sustainable Finance and the Rise of Investment Conscience

By Chris Killian and David Strongin

At SIFMA's 2016 Annual Meeting, The Capital Markets Conference, sustainable finance was high on the agenda. SIFMA brought together representatives from across the spectrum of sustainable finance, including government, large capital market firms, not-for-profits and investors. Congressmen John Delaney (D-MD) and Tom MacArthur (R-NJ) participated in the panel in their capacity as co-chairs of the Congressional Social Investment Task Force.

Panelists touched on the ability of sustainable finance to catalyze the reimagining of philanthropy, government services, and public-private partnerships.

"Sustainable investments need to be thought of at the macro level," said Congressman Delaney. "To solve social problems, you need to invest money. It's hard to make transformative change in the world unless someone makes an investment.".... Read more...

September 27, 2016

The Business Case for Diversity and Inclusion

By Cheryl Crispen

The business case for diversity and inclusion was top of mind at  SIFMA's 2016 Annual Meeting, The Capital Markets Conference. Panelists touched on the rapidly changing demographic landscape and the need for companies to adapt in kind.

Congresswoman Terri Sewell addressed the audience, saying, "The success of our nation's financial sector hinges on its most important asset - its people."

Diversity isn't just good for individuals, it's good business. "If you keep hiring the same people, you're going to get the same views. You won't see innovation, you won't see change," said Chris Lewis, General Counsel at Edward Jones.

The panelists agreed that the business case for diversity isn't a difficult one to make. Firms are aware of the tangible benefits of inclusion, said Suni Harford, managing director at Citigroup: "Enhanced business begets more business, and that's good for the economy. Firms recognize that our consumers and clients and vendors are diverse and when we help those people, it comes back to us tenfold. You can make the business case very easily.".... Read more...

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