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Trump signs Dodd-Frank rollback

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden team wants to understand Trump effort to 'hollow out government agencies' Trump's remaking of the judicial system Overnight Defense: Trump transgender ban 'inflicts concrete harms,' study says | China objects to US admiral's Taiwan visit MORE on Thursday signed a bipartisan bill to loosen key portions of the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, cementing the first major changes to President Obama’s landmark banking law.

Trump enacted the legislation during a White House ceremony two days after the House of Representatives passed the bill to exempt dozens of banks from strict federal regulation.

Trump had pledged to “dismantle” Dodd-Frank, a law long targeted by Republicans, and touted the bill he signed as the first step in that process. While the bill will release dozens of banks from stronger Federal Reserve oversight, it falls well short of the president’s vow to repeal and replace Dodd-Frank.

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“We’ve kept a lot of promises,” Trump said. “This is truly a great day for Americans, and a great day for workers and small businesses across the nation.”

The bill signed by Trump was the product of years of bipartisan negotiations between Republican senators opposed to the entire law and moderate Democrats concerned about its impact on community banks and credit unions. The narrow GOP majority in the Senate made it impossible to pass a Dodd-Frank rollback without the support of moderate Democrats.

The legislation was introduced in November by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike CrapoMichael (Mike) Dean CrapoDemocrats accuse Mnuchin of sabotaging economy in dispute with Fed Shelton's Fed nomination on knife's edge amid coronavirus-fueled absences Bottom line MORE (R-Idaho) and a group of moderate Democrats on the panel, including Sens. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampFive House Democrats who could join Biden Cabinet Biden names John Kerry as 'climate czar' in new administration OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Barrasso to seek top spot on Energy and Natural Resources Committee | Forest Service finalizes rule weakening environmental review of its projects | Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight MORE (N.D.), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterPresident is wild card as shutdown fears grow Repealing the Affordable Care Act: Too big a price to pay for veterans Democrats vent to Schumer over Senate majority failure MORE (Mont.), Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyBiden and Schumer face battles with left if Democrats win big Harris walks fine line on Barrett as election nears The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by JobsOhio - Showdown: Trump-Biden debate likely to be nasty MORE (Ind.) and Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerTrump tells GSA that Biden transition can begin Hillicon Valley: Leadership changes at top cyber agency raise national security concerns | Snapchat launches in-app video platform 'Spotlight' | Uber, Lyft awarded federal transportation contract Democrats accuse GSA of undermining national security by not certifying Biden win MORE (Va.).

Trump on Thursday praised “a lot of great Democrats” who had written the bill, but did not invite most of its Democratic authors to the signing ceremony.

Trump only invited Heitkamp to the event, snubbing Tester, Donnelly and Warner.

A Donnelly aide said his office "was told by the White House he would not be receiving an invitation due to space constraints.” Even so, the event was attended by close to two dozen lawmakers and administration officials, some of which had little to do with the legislation signed by Trump

Trump was also joined by Vice President Mike PenceMichael (Mike) Richard PenceLoeffler to return to campaign trail following second negative COVID-19 test Loeffler to continue to self-isolate after conflicting COVID-19 test results Loeffler isolating after possible COVID-19 infection MORE, Crapo, House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb HensarlingThomas (Jeb) Jeb HensarlingLawmakers battle over future of Ex-Im Bank House passes Ex-Im Bank reboot bill opposed by White House, McConnell Has Congress lost the ability or the will to pass a unanimous bipartisan small business bill? MORE (R-Texas) and Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinOn The Money: Democrats accuse Mnuchin of sabotaging economy in dispute with Fed | Trump administration proposal takes aim at bank pledges to avoid fossil fuel financing | JPMorgan: Economy will shrink in first quarter due to COVID-19 spike Democrats accuse Mnuchin of sabotaging economy in dispute with Fed The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by the UAE Embassy in Washington, DC - Pence, Biden wage tug of war over pandemic plans MORE.

The president was also flanked by several Republican members of the Senate Banking and House Financial Services panels, along with GOP lawmakers that had little input on the bill Trump signed.

Sen. Steve DainesSteven (Steve) David DainesRick Scott tests positive for coronavirus Biden eyes new leadership at troubled public lands agency OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Barrasso to seek top spot on Energy and Natural Resources Committee | Forest Service finalizes rule weakening environmental review of its projects | Biden to enlist Agriculture, Transportation agencies in climate fight MORE (R-Mont.) was in attendance for the ceremony, despite not being on the Banking committee or a co-sponsor of the legislation. Tester aides saw Daines' invitation as a move motivated by politics, snubbing the Democrat who had spent years crafting the bill.

A spokeswoman for Daines said "Since he was elected into the House, Daines has been consistently working on the repeal of the disastrous Dodd-Frank legislation," and pointed to his votes and speeches in support of the bill Trump signed Thursday.

The final compromise leaves most of Dodd-Frank in place, but provides a major boost for some of the largest U.S. banks. The measure releases of regional banks from tighter regulation by raising the threshold for closer Fed oversight from $50 billion to $250 billion in assets.

Banks below the new threshold will no longer be automatically subject to annual Fed stress tests and capital buffers meant to protect large firms are from severe financial crises.

Those banks are also no longer required to from submit for Fed approval a “living will” that outlines how a bank’s assets could be liquidated upon the firm’s failure without causing a widespread meltdown.

The bill includes several provisions to scrap rules for community banks and credit unions. Firms that hold 500 or fewer mortgages a year will no longer have to report some home loan data to federal regulators under anti-discrimination laws.

The bill also broadens the definition of qualified mortgages for smaller firms and exempts banks and credit unions with less than $10 billion in assets from the Volcker Rule, which bans firms from making risky bets with their own assets.

Trump said the rollbacks would help community banks and credit unions become “vibrant and strong,” insisting years of overregulation had suffocated small firms.

“They shouldn’t be regulated the same way as big complex financial institutions,” Trump said. “This is all about the Dodd-Frank disaster.”
Bank and credit union lobbying groups praised Trump for enacting the regulatory relief they’ve sought for years.

Rebeca Romero Rainey, president and CEO of the Independent Community Bankers of America, said the law “unravels many of the suffocating regulatory burdens our nation’s community banks face and puts community banks in a much better position to unleash their full economic potential.”

Updated at 1:37 p.m.