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Reports reveal significant challenges for U.S. financial services industry, global competitiveness at stake

WASHINGTON, DC - Idaho Senator Mike Crapo, in an effort to call attention to the challenges facing U.S. financial markets, recently introduced an amendment to H.J. Res. 20, the continuing appropriations resolution for 2007. Key industry professionals today issued statements recognizing Crapo's efforts to secure American competitiveness in the global economy. Crapo's amendment highlights the findings in two recent reports - the Interim Report of the Committee on Capital Markets Regulation and the McKinsey report on New York Competitiveness - that the U.S. is losing ground in the key areas of global initial public offerings (IPOs) and over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives. The amendment also expresses the sense of the Senate that certain steps should be taken to keep an essential part of the U.S. economy competitive on the global market."The financial services sector plays a vital role in our economy," said Crapo. "As these reports clearly indicate, the current regulatory burden is a problem. U.S. capital markets are losing their edge in the face of intensifying global competition, and growth is being hampered. My amendment urges Congress, the Administration, industry leaders and other stakeholders to take the necessary steps to restore American preeminence in the financial services industry and enhance U.S. ability to compete on the global scale. This move is critical to promoting economic growth, job creation, low cost of capital and entrepreneurship in our nation." "Already, we are seeing a shrinking proportion of international companies listing shares on U.S. stock exchanges, and the fast-growing OTC derivatives markets are growing more rapidly elsewhere," Crapo added. "The evident challenges facing U.S. markets necessitate our immediate attention to this important issue." The following industry professionals issued a joint letter of support for Crapo's amendment: American Bankers Association, Business Roundtable, Chamber of Commerce, Financial Services Forum, Futures Industry Association, Investment Company Institute, International Swaps and Derivatives Association, and Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association. NASDAQ and NYSE, the New York Stock Exchange, also wrote letters of support for Crapo's amendment. To read Crapo's statement for the Congressional Record on his amendment to H.J. Res. 20, visit