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Eliminating “trade” pact rules that undermine robust financial regulation

Many countries are bound to expansive financial services deregulation requirements imposed by the World Trade Organization (WTO) and various Free Trade Agreements (FTAs). These Wall-Street-friendly terms undermine the global consensus for more robust regulation of the financial sector that emerged in the aftermath of the 2007-2008 economic crisis.

These “trade” pact terms lock in domestically, and export internationally, the model of extreme financial deregulation that most analysts consider a prime cause of the 2007-2008 global financial crisis. Deregulation (not only liberalization) of the financial services sector – including banking, insurance, asset management, pension funds, securities, and more – is among the most important, but least discussed, aspects of the WTO and FTAs.