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Financial services need free markets

By Jared Crawford


Washington politicians have a unique way of naming legislation after the very thing it undermines. Take, for example, the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The landmark legislation passed after the 2008 financial crisis impacted nearly every part of the nation's financial services industry.


While the legislation undeniably reformed Wall Street, it has done plenty to harm consumers, not protect them. From over-regulating our community banks to micromanaging every swipe of your debit card, Dodd-Frank did more to limit consumers’ choices and harm their pocketbooks than it did to protect them.


Despite some of the clear drawbacks of Dodd-Frank, some lawmakers wish to expand on its failed policies. One of the well-intended mistakes of Dodd-Frank was the inclusion in the eleventh hour of the Durbin Amendment. Since 2010, the Durbin Amendment has set price controls on interchange fees for debit cards. Interchange fees are charged to merchants by banks to cover the risk associated with using a card. Now legislators are attempting to extend this failed policy to credit cards.


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