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John Dugan: banking regulator or banking industry lobbyist?

John Dugan (Reuters/Kevin Lamarque)

John Dugan (Reuters/Kevin Lamarque)

John Dugan is at it again.

The head of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency is still looking and sounding like a banking industry lobbyist, arguing that the already-weakened Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposal in Chris Dodd’s reform bill is still too strong.  From the Financial Times (via the NYT):

“In every case consumer protection has the edge and will trump safety and soundness and I think that is backwards,” said John Dugan, the comptroller of the currency, at an American Bankers Association conference.

Mr Dugan, whose office regulates national banks, said a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposed in Mr Dodd’s financial regulation bill, which was published on Monday and is to be revised next week, was too strong.

The comments were unusually forthright from an influential regulator and came amid a surge of lobbying from regulators and banks before next week’s mark-up of the bill in the banking committee.

Dugan is also arguing for greater federal preemption of state consumer protection laws affecting banks — which is coincidentally the same argument the US Chamber of Commerce is making.

How this guy John Dugan has any credibility left as a regulator is a mystery. As I’ve said before, I think Obama should replace him now.

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