The shrinking share of foreign IPO listings on New York's financial markets has had Wall Street fretting of late, wondering if it's about to lose its status as the world's financial capital.
Now Congress is taking note too. Late last month House Republicans tapped New York congressman Vito Fossella to chair a panel to explore what might be impeding the competitiveness of U.S. financial markets worldwide.
The Capital Markets, Economic, and Information Security Task Force is a project of the House Republican Policy Committee, a panel comprised of GOP leadership and top committee members, which explores various issues and makes legislative recommendations based on their findings.
During a stop in Chicago today, Fossella stopped to talk with CNBC’s Rick Santelli on the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The interview appears in two parts on this page.
The New York congressman was in the middle of a day-long field hearing, including panels with members of the CBOT, the CME, the Chicago Stock Exchange, and other Midwest regional boards of trade.
“Our main purpose is to ensure that the U.S. remains the envy of the world when it comes to raising capital," Rep. Fossella told Santelli of his committee. "We need to realize it’s no longer the only game in town.”
Fossella said that the implementation of legislation like Sarbanes-Oxley, while protecting investors, runs the risk of becoming too burdensome for companies, sending capital that used to come to U.S. shores elsewhere, like markets in Europe and Asia.
Fossella hopes to hold at least ten hearings similar to the Chicago meetings in major market hubs across the nation, like New York and Philadelphia. The objective is to collect ideas on regulation and how to best bring innovative vehicles to the market without too many burdens. He’ll take his conclusions back to Capitol Hill and work with Republican colleagues to create what the caucus sees as the most suitable legislative solutions.
The chief item Fossella would like to see his panel -- and both parties of Congress -- accomplish? "I think as Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, we need to keep America strong in the global marketplace. Not just for the traders on this floor. Ordinary Americans would be positively affected. And if we don’t do that we risk losing market share to the rest of the world."