Americans are being fed a false narrative.
As the story goes, in 1999, Congress repealed the 1933 Glass-Steagall Act. The financial sector was free from the watchful eye of federal regulators. Then in 2000, Congress deregulated derivatives, and all of this deregulation resulted in the financial mess known as the Great Recession of 2008.
That’s still a popular tale, but it’s dead wrong.
By every objective metric, there has been no substantial reduction in U.S. financial regulations during the past 100-plus years. Most financial market activity has taken place under the careful supervision of the federal government since at least the 1930s, and Congress has continually expanded the number and nature of financial sector regulations.