The weak link in bank reform

federal-reserve-400The financial regulatory reform legislation likely to be sent soon to President Obama calls for the biggest banks and hedge funds to put up some $20 billion in fees to pay the costs of additional oversight by regulators.  But even that won’t help regulators don’t quickly upgrade the training and standards of rank-and-file examiners, says Mark Williams, a former Fed examiner who now teaches finance in the School of Management.  In a Boston Globe op-ed, Williams — author of “Uncontrolled Risk” about the fall of Lehman Brothers — says if bank examiner performance over the last decade is an indicator, oversight may prove grossly inadequate unless the regulators become as financial sophisticated as those they’re supposed to regulate.

“Our entire financial system is dependent on strengthening regulator oversight and closing this sophistication gap.”

Contact Mark Williams 617-358-2789, williams@bu.edu

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