When Thinking of Asia, Remember Texas
Paul Volcker, was chairman of the US Federal Reserve Bank from 1975 to 1987. His remarks here are adapted from a lecture at the Paul Nitze School of International Relations at Johns Hopkins University.
New York - For Americans in particular, the easy advice we give the Asians these days about quick reform of their banking systems stands ins takr contrast to our inability to pass legislation rationalizing competition among our banks and competing financial institutions - an impasse that has lasted for more than 15 years amid entrenched private interest, It is ironic that one of the matters at issue in our Congress today, as a result of recent mergers, is the political pressure brought to bear to weaken the traditional barriers between commerce and banking - precisely the practice in Asia and elsewhere that we rail against as a major source of institutional weakness.
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