Warren: Wall Street should speak out on debt limit drama

Wall Street has long been wary of intense negotiations over the debt limit, fearful that default or even a concern the U.S. government would not pay its bills could thrust financial markets into turmoil and upend the global economy. But Warren contended the financial industry, which is oftentimes aligned with GOP interests, should bring pressure to bear on Republican lawmakers toying with holding firm on the $16.7 trillion borrowing cap.

"Preventing an actual default — a self-inflicted wound that could cause a spike in interest rates and a freeze in our credit markets — is clearly in your interests," she said.

The plea came during broader remarks Warren gave to the industry lobbying group Thursday. She acknowledged that she and the industry have not always seen eye to eye but sought to find common ground. In her remarks, she pushed for regulators to finalize long-delayed rules to the Dodd-Frank financial reform law, providing certainty to the industry. She also called for an overhaul of the housing finance system and reauthorizing the federal terrorism insurance program.

But she also diverged from the industry on many points, particularly on whether there needs to be more done to rein in banks that are "too big to fail."

She also pushed the industry to speak out against the "idiot sequester," arguing that the broad cuts are eliminating jobs and reducing benefits.

"I welcome the opportunity to join together whenever we have common ground," she said.