Financial Stability Oversight Council
|Financial Stability Oversight Council|
The Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) was created by Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, passed by the House Financial Services Committee on Dec. 2, 2009 to put an end to “too big to fail” financial firms. It was created as a nine-member council, led by the Treasury secretary, to look out for systemic risks. The FSOC subjects to Fed oversight any nonbank financial companies whose financial distress would pose risks to the financial stability of the United States.
The Oversight Council's most important initial task is to attempt to spot “systemically important” institutions -- the potential future AIGs, Lehman Brothers or Long Term Capital Managements that escaped the regulation heaped on traditional deposit-taking banks but still wreaked havoc on the financial system. The Council created the Systemically Important Financial Market Utility designation to identify these organizations for more regulatory oversight.
Products and Services
Besides making the Fed aware of distressed companies, the FSOC is also tasked with directing regulators to raise capital requirements. It relies on the work of the new Office of Financial Research, within the Treasury, to serve as an early warning system for systemic risk. 
The council is under the authority of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and is currently chaired by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. Its 10 voting members include the heads of the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Reserve Board, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the National Credit Union Administration Board, among others.
- All eyes on watchdogs to give financial reforms bite. The Financial Times.
- Reform Bill From Senate Democrats Adds Layers of Oversight. The New York Times.
- A Legislative Assault on the Financial Stability Oversight Council. The New York Times.