While one might be tempted to suggest that the many bad consequences of the Dodd-Frank Financial "Reform" bill are typical unintended consequences of do-gooder over-regulators who pander to voters with claims of evil, heartless, parasitic bankers.
The truth is that most bankers are hard-working honorable people, just like people in every other business (other than politics and union management.) More importantly, they are in one of the most competitive industries in America, and one which was already one of the most regulated in America prior to the disastrous Dodd-Frank mess, which imposes far more damage on the nation than any potential benefit.
The Financial Services Roundtable has a new "Fast Facts" paper about the impacts of Dodd-Frank, compiled from various independent studies. For ordinary Americans it is a nightmare.
- Dodd-Frank crushes earnings at large banks, meaning that customers will face higher fees and higher loan interest rates, while investors suffer lower stock prices and lower dividends.
- A particular area of concern for lower income Americans is a massive drop in the availability of free checking accounts, due to Dodd-Frank.
- "The Dodd-Frank Act already has imposed $14.2 billion in direct compliance costs since its passage and will require 25,679 full-time employees to file 51.2 million hours of paperwork annually."
- By slashing the potential return on equity for small community banks, Dodd-Frank is putting many of them out of business, and preventing many others from being created. So much for looking out for the little guy.
It goes on and on. It is remarkable that anybody can support this legislation with a straight face, and we must hope that Mitt Romney wins the presidency and follows through on his promise to repeal it.
There is never -- I repeat, never -- a law which claims to regulate an industry, particularly one whose customers include the majority of Americans, which does not end up hurting consumers and investors far out of proportion to any claimed benefit for our "protection."