Some, try as they might, to say that Hillary Clinton will be soft on Wall Street when the opposite is actually true. She knows just how much Wall Street greed had to do with the recession that began with the housing crisis in 2007. She also knows what we need to do to prevent such a crash from ever happening again. One also can’t just throw blanket blame at any one company or bank or lender. The crash was a perfect storm of greed and taking advantage of those who simply didn’t know better.
Here are Hillary Clinton’s remarks from December 5, 2007:
“Now, who’s exactly to blame for the housing crisis? Well, that’s always a question that the press and people ask and I think there’s plenty of blame to go around.
Responsibility belongs to mortgage lenders and brokers, who irresponsibly lowered underwriting standards, pushed risky mortgages, and hid the details in the fine print.
Responsibility belongs to the Administration and to regulators, who failed to provide adequate oversight, and who failed to respond to the chorus of reports that millions of families were being taken advantage of.
Responsibility belongs to the rating agencies, who woefully underestimated the risks involved in mortgage securities.
And certainly borrowers share responsibility as well. Homebuyers who paid extra fees to avoid documenting their income should have known they were getting in over their heads. Speculators who were busy buying two, three, four houses to sell for a quick buck don’t deserve our sympathy.
But finally, responsibility also belongs to Wall Street, which not only enabled but often encouraged reckless mortgage lending. Mortgage lenders didn’t have balance sheets big enough to write millions of loans on their own. So Wall Street originated and packaged the loans that common sense warned might very well have ended in collapse and foreclosure. Some people might say Wall Street only helped to distribute risk. I believe Wall Street shifted risk away from people who knew what was going on onto the people who did not.
Wall Street may not have created the foreclosure crisis, but Wall Street certainly had a hand in making it worse.”
If anyone would bother to take the time to read her proposals to make sure a crash never happens again they’d soon realize Hillary’s not about to let Wall Street get away with anything. Here are her plans:
- Impose a risk fee on the largest financial institutions. Banks and financial companies would be required to pay a fee based on their size and their risk of contributing to another financial crisis.
- Close the Volcker Rule’s hedge fund loophole. The Volcker Rule prohibits banks from making risky trading bets with taxpayer-backed money—one of the core protections of the post-financial crisis Wall Street reforms. However, under current law these banks can still invest billions through hedge funds, which are exempt from this rule. Hillary would close that loophole and strengthen the law.
- Discourage excessive risk-taking by making senior bankers accountable. Senior managers should lose some or all of their bonus compensation when a large bank suffers losses that threaten its overall financial health.
- Make sure no firm is ever too big and too risky to be managed effectively. Hillary’s plan would give regulators more authority to force overly complex or risky firms to reorganize, downsize, or break apart.
- Tackle financial dangers of the “shadow banking” system. Hillary’s plan will enhance transparency and reduce volatility in the “shadow banking system,” which includes certain activities of hedge funds, investment banks, and other non-bank financial companies.
- Impose a tax on high-frequency trading. The growth of high-frequency trading has unnecessarily placed stress on our markets, created instability, and enabled unfair and abusive trading strategies. Hillary would impose a tax on harmful high-frequency trading and reform rules to make our stock markets fairer, more open, and transparent.
She’s also making sure to hold those who break the rules accountable:
- Prosecuting individuals when they break the law. Hillary would extend the statute of limitations for prosecuting major financial frauds, enhance whistleblower rewards, and provide the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission more resources to prosecute wrongdoing.
- Holding executives accountable when they are responsible for their subordinates’ misconduct. Hillary believes that when corporations pay large fines to the government for violating the law, those fines should cut into the bonuses of the executives who were responsible for or should have caught the problem. And when egregious misconduct happens on an executive’s watch, that executive should lose his or her job.
- Holding corporations accountable when they break the law. As she enhances individual accountability, Hillary will make sure that corporations don’t treat penalties for breaking the law as merely a cost of doing business, so that we can put an end to the patterns of corporate wrongdoing that we see too often today.
And if you’re still not convinced, feel free to read a more comprehensive version of her plans HERE.
We need comprehensive reform. We need solutions that will no only be strong, but long-lasting and unable to be manipulated by those still trying to scam others. Listening to people go after Hillary and say that she’d be weak on Wall Street is not only misguided, but simply wrong. Even Elizabeth Warren supports Clinton’s plan.
Now, this isn’t to put any other candidate down, or try to convince anyone who to vote for. This is simply just laying down the facts.
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