Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Financial Deregulation, Malregulation, and Reregulation

The Freakonomics blog at the New York Times has an interview with Richard Posner about his forthcoming book, A Failure of Capitalism. This paragraph caught my eye, about what the future holds:

There will be more regulation of financial institutions, and that is probably a good thing, though most of the goals of tighter regulation could probably be achieved just by more assiduous enforcement of existing regulations; regulatory laxity was a particularly marked characteristic of the Bush administration’s economic philosophy. The United States was capitalistic when banks were tightly regulated, and it will still be capitalistic if they are again tightly regulated. My fear is that the rush to re-regulate will produce more than the usual quota of dumb regulations. Since there is not going to be another housing and credit bubble in the next year, I would urge that the proposal of new regulations be deferred for a year, to provide time for a calm and thorough appraisal of the regulatory options.

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