Mr. TOOMEY. Madam Speaker, I rise in support of this rule and the legislation under consideration today. The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act is probably the most important financial legislation to come before Congress since the Glass-Steagall Act mandated a separation between banking and the securities industry back in 1933.
Today there is virtually unanimous agreement among economists, academics, policymakers and most importantly the men and women actually creating and providing financial services across America today. The repeal of Glass-Steagall is necessary so that consumers can get the products and services they desire and American financial firms can compete in the global marketplace.
Madam Speaker, I would like to highlight just one small part of this sweeping legislation. I am particularly pleased that this bill includes an important provision regarding certain derivative transactions, especially credit and equity swaps. These somewhat obscure products are actually very important tools used by businesses, including financial service firms, to manage a variety of risks that they face. This bill reaffirms that swap contracts are legitimate bank products that can be executed and booked in banks and are adequately regulated by and will continue to be regulated by banking supervisors.
I would also like to congratulate the many Members of this Chamber who have worked very hard, some for many years, on financial modernization. In particular, I would like to salute the gentleman from Iowa (Chairman LEACH) and the ranking member, the gentleman from New York (Mr. LAFALCE) for the outstanding work they have done to see this legislation through to completion, and I urge my colleagues to support the rule and passage of this historic bill.