Friday, April 8, 2011

What a Government Shutdown Means for Wall Street: Party on Dude!

From DealBook:
This is not exactly what Wall Street had in mind when it asked the government to stay out of its business.
As the federal government moved closer to shutting down, the financial industry on Friday morning was bracing for the impact. Wall Street needs the government for everything from guaranteeing mortgages to processing regulatory filings. On the other hand, a shutdown could also protect some firms from regulatory scrutiny in the short term — at least those facing investigations.

Top financial regulators like the Securities and Exchange Commission would have to send all “non-essential” staff home. The policy does not mean Mary Schapiro, the S.E.C.’s chairwoman, will get some vacation time. Ms. Schapiro and the agency’s four other commissioners are allowed to stay at work, along with some employees of their choosing.

The agency would keep a skeletal staff “to respond to emergency situations involving the safety of human life or the protection of property,” according to the S.E.C.’s Web site.
At the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, only 25 employees could keep working. That accounts for less than 4 percent of the agency’s staff. Not even the agency’s two administrative law judges can come to work. The remaining employees are not allowed to travel....MORE