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Regulation of Commercial Banks

29 April, 2015 - 15:03

Bank regulations are a form of government regulation which subject banks to certain requirements, restrictions and guidelines. This regulatory structure creates transparency between banking institutions and the individuals and corporations with whom they conduct business, among other things. Given the interconnectedness of the banking industry and the reliance that the national (and global) economy hold on banks, it is important for regulatory agencies to maintain control over the standardized practices of these institutions. Supporters of such regulation often hinge their arguments on the "too big to fail" notion. This holds that many financial institutions (particularly investment banks with a commercial arm) hold too much control over the economy to fail without enormous consequences. This is the premise for government bailouts, in which federal financial assistance is provided to banks or other financial institutions who appear to be on the brink of collapse. The belief is that without this aid, the crippled banks would not only become bankrupt, but would create rippling effects throughout the economy. Others advocate deregulation, or free banking, whereby banks are given extended liberties as to how they operate the institution.