How the New Regulatory Reform Affects Jobs in Finance

Defenders of a liberal financial system will probably agree that lack of education, wishful thinking and over confidence caused thousands of Americans to get into debt. On the other side of the coin, debtors might argue that greedy bankers and financiers ‘bet’ on the crisis and consequently willed it. Philosophy teaches us to examine issues objectively. The government’s main objective, stipulated by the declaration of independence, is to secure the unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The millions of Americans who recently lost their jobs evidenced the need for the government to secure these rights.

In essence the new regulatory bill has been developed to prevent abusive practices and to avoid manipulative propaganda. By creating federal agencies that will monitor what happens in the financial industry, the government expects to have a transparent banking system that will allow consumers to understand what they are getting into. Additionally, the government will have oversight of other financial companies that pose risks to the system, and have the power to dismantle them if necessary. The initial outcome of the bill will not begin until a couple of years; thereby it will neither improve nor aggravate the unemployment rate for the short term.

Last year’s stimulus package included grants to finance state training programs directed to laid-off workers; however these have had ambiguous results. As a matter of fact, a study developed by the Labor Department that randomly picked people trained by a federally financed program in 2001 and 2002 found practically no financial gains. Yet, according to Peter Weddle, former Chairman & CEO of Job Bank USA, Inc., one of the largest electronic employment service companies in the United States, “Being unemployed is the perfect time to assess if you are working at your talent.” He goes on to define talent as the intersection between passion and practicality or, in other words, “what you love to do but also what you do well.”

Though this might be true, most finance and accounting professionals worry how this bill will affect their economy. Some probably think it is a good time to go back to school and prepare for the opportunities that will be created. It would be foolish to speculate on what will happen, but it would be wise to prepare for the new regulation. Moreover, those who are able to fully understand the bill will be able to use it for their benefit. Government agencies will need auditors to monitor banks and other financial companies. The businesses being audited will need tax lawyers to interpret the new regulation and accountants to keep their books up to date. Maybe new types of businesses will be created. As businesses begin to adapt to the new regulation, they will periodically look for knowledgeable professionals.

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