A splinter group of the OWS movement also known as Occupy the SEC has picked up the beat and is banging the drum in a play to support the Volcker Rule, according to the Huffington Post.
A small of crowd of OTS was in fact seen milling outside the NY Fed Monday afternoon in a play to “influence the dialog.” Of course, the walls of the NY Fed are as thick as a brick and these poor souls really should be down in Washington D.C. petitioning in front of the CFTC and SEC, the White House and other Obama Administration appointees if they really want their voices heard.
Then again, to “influence the dialog” ultimately requires having a voice inside the system and this highlights a fundamental difference between the Occupy movement organizers who remain on the outside looking in as opposed the TEA party gang who had a big hand in changing the balance of power in the House of Representatives in November 2010 and who continue to work at a grass roots level to take back the Senate if not the White House come this November 6th.
That being said the HuffPo piece notes that the Occupy faction “organized this rally in lower Manhattan to focus attention on” the Volcker Rule, even as watchdogs down in Washington are reviewing a slew of comments from financial firms and their lobbyists who are pushing back hard against the more onerous Volcker provisions that could also hinder their customary function as market makers.
That being said Occupy the SEC is comprised of a more sophisticated lot that includes lawyers and former Wall Street types who have found themselves unemployed or all non void walking the streets like Pretty Boy Floyd (with a shout to Grand Master Flash!).
Further, the splinter group actually submitted a 300+ page letter of its own to the SEC with its comments on the rule that contends that the rule does not go far enough. In fact, an attorney with Occupy the SEC reportedly said that “there’s a huge incentive from the banks to ensure that they can continue doing the things that they have been doing.”
But what they were doing is really within legal and regulatory guidelines since there has no prohibition on banks making proprietary trades since the Glass Steagall Act separating commercial banking form investment banking was taken down in the waning days of the Clinton Administration back in 1999.
That being said perhaps the Occupy movement should take their camp up the Hudson River to the Clinton digs in the lovely little hamlet of Chappaqua nestled in the Westchester woods?
Kyle Colona is a New York based freelance writer and a Feature Writer for the Compliance Exchange and Wall Street Job Report. He has an extensive background in legal and regulatory affairs in the financial services sector and his work has appeared in a variety of print and on-line publications.