What role should regulation play in financial markets? What have been the ramifications of financial regulation? To answer these and other questions regarding the efficacy of legislation on financial markets, this book examines the impact of the Gramm Leach Bliley Act (GLBA), also called the Financial Modernization Act of 1999, which fundamentally changed the financial landscape in the United States. The GLBA allows the formation of financial holding companies that can offer an integrated set of commercial banking, securities and insurance products. The tenth anniversary of the most sweeping financial legislation reform in the industrys structure is a natural benchmark for assessing the effects of the law and for questioning whether changes are necessary in the working of this historic legislation. The importance of this review is reinforced by a variety of proposals in the last several years to reform the regulation of financial institutions that have attracted considerable attention among regulators and in the financial firms that they regulate. Most recently, the financial crisis and the failure of some large financial institutions have called into question the legitimacy of Americas current financial structure and its regulation, including to some degree the GLBA. There is no doubt that regulatory reform is front and center on todays policy agenda. The lessons of the GLBA experience and its effects, both domestic and international, on financial markets and competitiveness, risk-taking and risk management by financial services firms and their regulators will be critical to the direction the country takes and the effort to ensure that future financial crises do not occur or have less costly damage. With contributions from academics, policy experts, and a sponsor of the GLBA, Congressman James Leach, this book is invaluable to anyone interested in financial system reform.

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