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WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama declared victory Friday after congressional negotiators reached a dawn agreement on a sweeping overhaul of rules overseeing Wall Street.
Lawmakers shook hands on the compromise legislation at 5:39 a.m. after Obama administration officials helped broker a deal that cracked the last impediment to the bill — a proposal to force banks to spin off their lucrative derivatives trading business. The legislation touches on an exhaustive range of financial transactions, from a debit card swipe at a supermarket to the most complex securities deals cut in downtown Manhattan.
Speaking to reporters as he left the White House to attend an economic summit of world leaders in Canada, the president said he was gratified by Congress' work and said the deal included 90 percent of what he had proposed. He said the bill, forged in the aftermath of the 2008 financial meltdown, represents the toughest financial overhaul since the Great Depression.
"We've all seen what happens when there is inadequate oversight and insufficient transparency on Wall Street," he said. "The reforms working their way through Congress will hold Wall Street accountable so we can help prevent another financial crisis like the one that we're still recovering from."
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