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Hensarling Remarks at U.S. Treasury Hearing


Washington, Jul 27 -

Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) delivered the following opening statement at today’s full committee hearing with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on the State of the International Financial System:


This morning the Committee welcomes Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin for his testimony on the State of the International Financial System. As we all know, it is a system that rests heavily upon our U.S. financial system and that system clearly needs improvement.

Fortunately, President Trump has outlined a bold, forward-looking plan to tackle the serious problems facing hardworking American families who have seen their paychecks stagnate, their savings shrink and their dreams diminish over the last decade. The fact is this economy isn’t close to reaching its potential.

Nearly 8 years after the last recession ended, Americans remain stuck in the slowest recovery in generations. Our economy grew at a measly 1.6 percent last year, when our historic norm is twice that. Over 300,000 manufacturing jobs have disappeared during these last 8 years. Eight years of Obamanomics has clearly taken a toll.

One place it has taken a toll is the competitiveness of our capital markets. We simply cannot afford to lose our status as the global leader for capital markets.

Yet the United States has dropped to 17th in a recent world ranking of economic freedom—a historic low for our nation. This is based on our level of business freedom, investment freedom and financial freedom. While U.S. economic freedom has declined, the economic freedom of a number of our international competitors has actually grown.

I have faith in our U.S. capital markets, and the spirit of American entrepreneurs and businesses, to take necessary risks and grow. But to do so, the unaccountable Washington bureaucracy must finally be held accountable. We must address the regulatory cost of doing business in the U.S. under Dodd-Frank. We must work to level the playing field for American companies to prosper, and as a result, our economy will grow healthier for all.

For these reasons, the President’s Executive Order establishing the core principles for regulating the U.S. financial system is vitally important to us all.

As the report notes, for too long we have not empowered “Americans to make independent financial decisions and informed choices in the marketplace, save for retirement, [or] build individual wealth.” We have not enabled “American companies to be competitive with foreign firms in domestic and foreign markets.” I could not agree more.

Mr. Secretary, as you know, your first report issued last month closely mirrors key, foundational principles and policies that are contained within the House-passed Financial CHOICE Act.

From helping end bank bailouts, to making the destructive CFPB accountable, to tailoring regulations for our community banks and credit unions, your recommendations will clearly help craft a more sensible, less burdensome, healthier regulatory system.

Please know that the actions that you and this Administration are taking to ensure the competitiveness of the U.S. financial system are a welcome change and one that I fully support.

Thank you for being here. This Committee looks forward to working with you.