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Dodd-Frank: financial regulation in neutral

Financial Regulation » Dodd-Frank: Financial Regulation In Neutral

Dodd-Frank rules pending
Dodd-Frank rules pending

If you're wondering why we're still talking about the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act more than a year after its passage, it's because it is still being written.

Sure, the law itself is in place, but as a major overhaul of financial regulation, Dodd-Frank authorized hundreds of new rules as well as studies to shape those rules, says Michael Barr, a former assistant secretary at the Treasury who helped write the law.

"Congress sets the basic framework and then the executive branch needs to interpret that framework, put the details in place to make the rules work and then implement the laws," Barr says.

But with a 2,100-page "honey-do" list handed to already-busy regulators, some of the work remains incomplete. Of the 400 rules enacted in Dodd-Frank, only 51 had been completed as of mid-July, according to a Dodd-Frank progress report in July from the law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP.

Part of the blame for the slow progress of Dodd-Frank's implementation goes to Congress, which has held up funding to enforce the law, Barr says. What's more, the rule-making process is often hotly contested by the affected industries.

Here are some key Dodd-Frank rules yet to go into effect that could alter your financial life for years to come.

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