Banks vs. regulators

There has been a little something for everyone in the latest news from the ongoing battle between the financial sector and federal regulators. The Federal Reserve rejected five of the eight largest banks’ plans for orderly liquidation in a crisis — their “living wills” — a move that signaled to Wall Street’s critics that the institutions are still “too big to fail.” Goldman Sachs agreed to a $5 billion civil settlement with the Justice Department, admitting that it had misled certain buyers of its mortgage-backed securities during the housing bubble a decade ago. Meanwhile, regulators took a hit, as a U.S. district judge in Washington ruled that insurance giant MetLife had been improperly designated a “systemically important” institution subject to tighter federal control.