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The difficulties of financial regulation, illustrated in two photographs

Predictions for what is about to happen to the economic system, or even more narrowly the financial system, are notoriously unreliable. As witnessed by this newspaper front page from just before the US stock market plunged again in 1929:

New York Daily fails to predict the stock market crash of 1929

I took that photo at the Museum of American Finance. It is also home to a hard copy of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. Even excluding the regulations made subsequent to it, the act is hardly short – illustrating by weight of paper the problem of financial regulations not only being made in a world where no-one really knows what is going to happen, but also of those regulations being so complicated that no-one really knows what they’re going to achieve either.

Dodds Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act

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