Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd, D-Conn., is reconsidering plans to create a stand-alone consumer agency in a bill to overhaul the regulatory structure of the U.S. financial system. Instead Dodd and Richard Shelby, the top Republican on the panel, are considering an expanded consumer financial protection division within an existing regulatory agency. The House and the Obama administration have pushed a stand-alone consumer agency as a central component of their proposals to overhaul the financial system.
Dodd wants to avoid the sort of partisan rancor surrounding the health care overhaul battle. So, he has created four bipartisan working groups of banking panel members to attempt to find compromises on key components of the bill. A separate proposal being considered would provide authority to wind down and disband failing firms that pose a risk to the broader economy.