AFR Statement on the President’s FY 2012 Budget

DATE: February 14, 2011

CONTACT: John Carey at 202-466-1854

AFR Statement on the President’s FY 2012 Budget

Washington, DC – Americans for Financial Reform, a coalition of more than 250 national and state organizations working together for strong financial reform, issued the following statement today:

President Obama’s FY 2012 budget provides the important funding needed for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) to enforce the transparency and accountability we need to protect economic stability, and prevent fraud, ballooning shadow markets, and self dealing recklessness that were major causes of the financial crisis. The budget also provides the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau with necessary funding to stand up the agency, the first federal agency with only one job, protecting consumers in the financial marketplace.

Americans who are already struggling need these agencies to do their jobs to prevent a repeat of the financial crisis that cost Americans millions of lost jobs, billions in tax-payer funded bailouts and trillions in lost homes and savings.

Last year, President Obama signed into law legislation designed to rein in Wall Street excesses and restore the financial safety and stability on which the country’s economic well-being depends. The American public overwhelmingly supports Wall Street reform. By increasing funding for the SEC and CFTC, this budget builds on the efforts to repair our nation’s financial system, establish integrity in the financial markets, and facilitate productive economic activity for the benefit of the general public.

The President’s budget gives the SEC a budget increase to $1.427 billion, entirely offset by transaction fees, and increases the CFTC’s budget to $308 million with proposed user fees generating about $117 million for the CFTC’s non-enforcement activities. The proposed user fees are sensible supplements to funding through the appropriations process and as a matter of fact, AFR supports a broader financial speculation tax as an important way to both discourage excessive speculation and raise revenue.