The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act: A Failed Vision for Increasing Consumer Protection and Heightening Corporate Responsibility in International Financial Transactions


Eric C. Chaffee


The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act is at best an incomplete vision for increasing consumer protection and heightening corporate responsibility. Despite the Obama Administration’s and the United States Department of the Treasury’s calls for a new foundation for financial regulation in the United States, Congress’s response failed to satisfy these calls because the foundation created by the Dodd-Frank Act is cracked, fragmented, and incomplete. In many regards, the Act is simply an invitation for regulation based on the myriad of studies that it requires to be conducted for purposes of future regulatory action. Worse yet, the Act fails to confront the realities of the emerging global financial markets by focusing almost exclusively on domestic issues, while failing to address new international realities.

This Article suggests that the Dodd-Frank Act represents an incomplete vision for financial regulation because of its failure to adequately address the globalization of financial markets. In fairness to Congress, much of the coordination and cooperation that is necessary on the international level will have to be fueled by the executive branch and the administrative agencies charged with regulatory oversight. With that said, however, the Dodd-Frank Act is largely a twentieth century approach to regulating twenty-first century financial markets because it fails to adequately address the globalization of financial markets that has occurred within the past few decades.

This article concludes that the Dodd-Frank Act is a good beginning for regulatory reform but does not embody a comprehensive vision for regulating the emerging global financial markets. Ultimately, Congress must act quickly to fill in the missing pieces of financial regulatory reform before another crisis ensues.


The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, consumer protection

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60 American University Law Review 1431 (2011)


COinS Eric C. Chaffee Faculty Bio