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A Brief History of the U.S. Regulatory Perimeter
This paper provides a brief history of the U.S. financial regulatory perimeter, a legal cordon comprised of â€œpositiveâ€ and â€œnegativeâ€ restrictions on the conduct of banking organizations. Todayâ€™s regulatory perimeter faces a wide range of challenges, from disaggregation, to new commercial entrants, to new varieties of charters (and new uses of legacy charters). We situate these challenges in the longer history of American banking, identifying a pattern in debates about the nature, shape, and position of the perimeter: outside-in pressure, inside-out pressure, and ...
Lessons from the History of the U.S. Regulatory Perimeter
Banking organizations in the United States have long been subject to two broad categories of regulatory standards. The first is permissive: a "positive" grant of rights and privileges, typically via a charter for a corporate entity, to engage in the business of banking.
Low Interest Rates and Bank Profits
The Fed’s December 2015 decision to raise interest rates after an unprecedented seven-year stasis offers a chance to assess the link between interest rates and bank profitability. A key determinant of a bank’s profitability is its net interest margin (NIM)—the gap between an institution’s interest income and interest expense, typically normalized by the average size of its interest-earning assets. The aggregate NIM for the largest U.S. banks reached historic lows in the fourth quarter of 2015, coinciding with the “low for long” interest rate environment in place since the ...