President Donald Trump signed the biggest rollback of bank regulations since the global financial crisis into law Thursday.
The measure designed to ease rules on all but the largest banks passed both chambers of Congress with bipartisan support. Backers say the legislation will lift burdens unnecessarily put on small and medium-sized lenders by the Dodd-Frank financial reform act and boost economic growth.
Opponents, however, have argued the changes could open taxpayers to more liability if the financial system collapses or increase the chances of discrimination in mortgage lending.
"Dodd-Frank was something they said could not be touched. And honestly, a lot of great Democrats knew that it had to be done and they joined us in the effort," Trump said before he signed the bill, surrounded by lawmakers from both major parties. "And there is something so nice about bipartisan, and we're going to have to try more of it. Let's do more of it."
The measure eases restrictions on all but the largest banks. It raises the threshold to $250 billion from $50 billion under which banks are deemed too important to the financial system to fail. Those institutions also would not have to undergo stress tests or submit so-called living wills, both safety valves designed to plan for financial disaster.