Art depicting large dollar bills behind American flag. Russ Allison Loar/Flickr

Le retour du Glass-Steagall Act

WASHINGTON, DC – Une évolution majeure s’opère actuellement dans la politique américaine. Les trois grands candidats démocrates restant en course pour la présidentielle sont désormais tous d’accord avec l’idée que la situation actuelle du secteur financier n’est pas acceptable, et que davantage de changements sont nécessaires. Le président Barack Obama a toujours considéré la loi de réforme financière Dodd-Frank de 2010 comme suffisamment innovante. Aujourd’hui, l’ancienne Secrétaire d’État Hillary Clinton, le sénateur Bernie Sanders et l’ancien gouverneur Martin O’Malley souhaitent aller encore plus loin.     

Les trois candidats démocrates s’inscrivent toutefois en désaccord sur l’idée d’une nouvelle législation qui viendrait rebâtir un mur entre les affaires peu excitantes des banques commerciales ordinaires et les autres disciplines financières (telles que l’émission et le trading de valeurs, dans le cadre de ce que l’on appelle la banque d’investissement).

Dans la cadre de cette problématique, un « rétablissement du Glass-Steagall Act » est parfois évoqué, en référence à une législation promulguée à l’époque de la Grande Dépression – le fameux Banking Act de 1933 – consistant à séparer le secteur bancaire commercial et le secteur bancaire d’investissement. La formule évoquée n’est cependant pas tout à fait exacte : la proposition bipartisane la plus crédible à ce jour adopte une approche beaucoup plus moderne dans la distinction et la clarification des différentes types d’activités financières. Sanders et O’Malley se disent en faveur de cette idée générale ; Clinton n’est pas du même avis (du moins pas encore).

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