Obama Legacy: Financial Services

President Obama and Democrats Addressed Financial Wrongdoing

Again, at the time President Barack Obama was inaugurated, the Republican Party, led by George W. Bush, had lain waste to the economy. Virtually everyone was negatively affected; while it would have been nice if the damage was limited to people who owned a home they really couldn’t afford, but everyone with a retirement account or who were invested in the markets in any meaningful way were ruined, for the most part. Many of us saw our 401(k) lose about half in the space of six months.

The problem was, a lot of the excesses in the market were institutionalize by Republicans back in 2000, when they passed Gramm Leach Bliley. While many on the left note that GLB repealed Glass-Steagall, that was but the tip of the proverbial iceberg. The law allowed the establishment of a completely unregulated mortgage aftermarket and it made many formerly illegal practices legal. While many still whine about why “banksters” are not in jail for “what they did,” the fact of the matter is, most of what they did to crash the economy was legal. LEGAL. That was the problem. While President Obama couldn’t frog-march “Wall Street” into Leavenworth, he did as much as he could, given that the biggest players in the market were acting legally at the time. For example:

President Obama signed the Democratic-passed Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act, which gave the federal government more tools to investigate and prosecute fraud in every corner of the financial system, and create a bipartisan Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission to investigate the financial fraud that led to the economic meltdown. http://abcn.ws/g18Fe7

President Obama ordered 65 executives who took bailout money to cut their own pay until they paid back all bailout money. http://huff.to/eAi9Qq

President Obama and Congressional Democrats pushed through passed Dodd-Frank, one of the largest and most comprehensive Wall Street reforms since the Great Depression. http://bit.ly/hWCPg0   http://bit.ly/geHpcD Under Dodd-Frank, banks have to fund their own bailouts through the implementation of special transaction fees. Banks must also go through regular checks to evaluate their solvency, in order to prevent what happened in 2008.

President Obama and his Administration created and implemented rules to reduce the influence of speculators in the oil market. http://bit.ly/MDnA1t

President Obama created and implemented rules so banks can no longer use depositors’ money to invest in derivatives and other high-risk financial instruments that work against depositors’ interests. http://bit.ly/fnTayj

President Obama fully weighed in and supported the concept of allowing stockholders to vote on executive compensation. http://bit.ly/fnTayj

President Obama fully endorsed and supported the Democrats’ Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act of 2009, which was designed to shut down the loopholes for offshore tax avoidance. http://bit.ly/esOdfB   http://bit.ly/eG4DPM

President Obama also negotiated a deal with banks in Switzerland to permit the US government to have access to bank records of those suspected of being criminals and tax evaders, upon showing of probable cause. http://bit.ly/2aAwUS5

President Obama signed the Democratic-sponsored American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act, which managed to shut down many of the loopholes that allowed companies to send jobs overseas, as well as many provisions allowing them to avoid paying US taxes by moving their money and other operations offshore. http://bit.ly/2ryB9Z9

Thanks to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, championed and raised from the dead by President Obama and passed by Democrats with no Republican help, inflation in the healthcare sector dropped to its lowest point in 50 years.  http://on.wsj.com/1E6cYjF