OK, so the big, bad financial regulation speech came and went. Much ado about not much – most of us could have mouthed the words Ashlee Simpson-style given how abundant the coverage of this stuff has been.
Choice of Venue: Obama was smart to speak in front of a college audience (Cooper Union). For Obama, most college audiences are like wind-up cymbal monkeys, they would clap if he belched into a microphone.
Derivatives: His explanation of the importance of reform was light on detail, but most of what he said was common-sensical. The talk of putting derivatives onto an exchange was nice, but we’re talking about a lot of customized products so I don’t quite see how this will work. Transparency is more realistic than exchange-tradable.
Tone: He’s a cool customer and a natural speaker. There was no silly anger and he seemed to make the case that derivatives aren’t going away, they will simply carry more disclosure. Again, this was well-telegraphed.
Market Reaction: Yawn. The Greece/Euro thing is in the driver’s seat today from jump street. Hope you weren’t shorting banks into this speech because they are flat to mildly lower in general.
If I come across any illuminating links, I’ll post them below.