FSOC Designation Treasury Report: A Fundamental Shift in Approach
Creating an inter-agency panel of financial regulators to monitor systemic risk was a hallmark achievement of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank). The Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC), as Dodd-Frank coined it, was designed to correct perceived deficiencies in regulation – many different regulators oversaw different pieces of the financial system but none had visibility into the activities of entities they did not regulate. Under Dodd-Frank, the FSOC, chaired by the Secretary of the Treasury, would exist to promote cooperation among more than fifteen regulators and formalize coordination. Dodd-Frank did not end ‘‘too big to fail’’ by shrinking the largest financial institutions. Rather, it intended to better regulate large, complex financial institutions [Dodd-Frank’s revisions to the financial regulatory landscape extend far beyond large financial institutions to include, for example, material changes to the regulation of banks of all sizes, consumer protection, and derivatives.], including by empowering FSOC to designate certain nonbank entities as systemically important financial institutions (SIFIs), subjecting these SIFIs to enhanced prudential oversight by the Federal Reserve. This powerful regulatory tool has engendered significant controversy ever since.