Handbooks of Research on International Political Economy series
Edited by Anthony Payne and Nicola Phillips
Chapter 7: Private actors in the governance of global finance after the global crisis of 2008
In the first stages of the global financial crisis of 2008 it seemed likely that the crisis would result in greatly reduced power for private business actors. As Fortune magazine put it, 'politically speaking, corporate America - most of which has nothing to do with the Wall Street mess - has been summarily dethroned. And it will be a long slog back' (Easton 2008). Yet by 2011 there were numerous indicators, at least in the United States, that financial firms had regained their power remarkably quickly. Bank profitability and bonuses had been restored while the rest of the economy languished. Almost no bankers had been prosecuted for wrongdoing. US President Barack Obama had appointed William Daley of JP Morgan Chase as his chief of staff to improve his relationship with Wall Street. What is more, rivers of lobbying money were flowing into Washington to turn back regulatory initiatives. Indeed, at a closed door meeting about implementing one of the new financial regulations, the head of the main financial lobby group was reported as having 'barked orders to surprised Congressional staff members, urging them to delay the rule, according to two people who attended. He acted like someone running the meeting, they said, rather than like an invited guest' (Protess 2011).
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