AFR in the News: Should We Break Up the Big Banks? (MSNBC)

On January 6th, 2016, AFR’s senior policy analyst Alexis Goldstein appeared on MSNBC’s “All in with Chris Hayes.” On the show, Goldstein made the case for a new Glass Steagall Act as part of an “all of the above” approach to financial reform:

“Lehman Brothers did not cause the crisis. Lehman Brothers exposed the crisis. All of the megabanks who were a byproduct of the repeal of Glass-Steagall, which is the Depression-era law separating casino banking from boring banking – they had the same positions, the same garbage subprime mortgages that Lehman Brothers had…

I think you need an all-of-the-above approach: you use the law that bears Congressman Barney Frank’s name, which requires the breakup of any bank that is too big to fail without harming the economy; you pass new legislation, the 21st Century Glass Steagall Act, which is a bipartisan piece of legislation – Senator Warren’s on it, and Senator McCain is on it. And then you need to involve the public and the grass roots in order to build this new voice that’s going to hold these people accountable. You can’t just do one thing. If Glass-Steagall was repealed by a death by a thousand cuts, you need a hundred small steps to make the financial system safer.” — AFR’s Alexis Goldstein