Tag Archives: dodd-frank

CEI’s Battered Business Bureau: The Week in Regulation


It may have been a short work week, but it was still a busy one in the world of regulation:

  • 68 new final rules were published this week. That’s a new rule every 2 hours and 28 minutes, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. All in all, exactly 500 final rules have been published in the Federal Register this year. If this keeps up, 3,327 new rules will hit the books in 2012.
  • 1,545 new pages were added to the 2012 Federal Register this week, for a total of 11,367 pages. At this pace, the 2012 Federal Register will run 76,804 pages.
  • There were 15 significant actions this week, as defined by Executive Order 12866. Of those, one is an “economically significant” final rule. That means it costs $100 million or more per year.
  • So far this year, 84 final rules affect small businesses. 16 of them are significant rules.
  • Economically significant rules published so far in 2012 cost at least $15.01 billion. Two of the nine rules do not have cost estimates. We assume that rules lacking this basic transparency measure cost the bare minimum of $100 million per year. The true cost is almost certainly higher.

Here are highlights from final rules that passed this week:

  • The Small Business Administration is changing the size requirements for certain types of businesses to qualify as small. By raising some size limits, the SBA hopes to increase the amount of money that it transfers from taxpayers to private businesses.
  • The EPA issued a 123-page final rule designating and revising critical habitats for two types of minnow, each measuring less than 3 inches in length.
  • The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration has revised its fireworks approval policy.
  • We dare you to read all the way through this regulation that was published today to implement part of the Dodd-Frank financial regulation bill.

For more data, updated daily, go to TenThousandCommandments.com.

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CEI Podcast for September 29, 2011: The End of Free Debit Cards

Have a listen here.

Every time you use your debit card, the merchant has to pay a fee to the company that issued your card, usually about 1 percent of the purchase price. On October 1, that price will be capped by law to 21 cents. John Berlau, Director of CEI’s Center for Investors and Entrepreneurs, explains the unintended consequences that will hurt consumers, merchants, and banks alike. John has written on interchange fees for The Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, The American Spectator, and other outlets.

Tim Carney Knows How Washington Works

Tim’s latest column, “Bail them out, regulate them, then work for them,” is a must-read.

Amy Friend, a former staffer for Sen. Chris Dodd, played a large role in writing the Dodd-Frank financial regulation bill. And she just got a new job at a lobbying firm. Tim explains:

There are two types of people on K Street: access people, who can get you in the door; and policy people, who know what’s on every page of every relevant bill and regulation. Friend is the latter. While business will dry up for other Dodd alumni on K Street, Friend is valuable because — to quote one Republican lobbyist — “she knows what’s on page twenty-three-[bleep]ing-hundred of that bill,” and every other page, too.

In other words, Friend didn’t just write a landmark piece of legislation — she wrote her meal ticket.

Tim doubts that Friend is corrupt. But her story is very common in Washington. Lobbying wouldn’t be such a booming business if regulation wasn’t, too. And the revolving door between the Hill and K Street can be very profitable, even when no corruption is involved. Most people forget that regulators act just as self-interestedly as the people they regulate.