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Quick hits from the 2012 SIFMA Annual Meeting

A collection of news and insights from the 2012 SIFMA Annual Meeting taking place today in New York City.

Greenspan skeptical about Dodd-Frank: Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan expressed resolute skepticism about how effective the Dodd-Frank Act will prove to be. Greenspan said the sheer volume of hearings and rulemakings required to fulfill the legislation was physically impossible for regulators to manage. Greenspan also said Dodd-Frank might prove ineffective because it doesn’t take into account the always unpredictable actions of human beings in crisis. “Everyone gets frightened when there is a threat to life, limb or net worth. It’s how we react that is different,” Greenspan said.

CFTC’s Gensler discusses new proposal for enhanced customer fund protections: Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Gary Gensler detailed a new proposal put forth by the Commission that would improve the protections afforded customer funds. A key element of the new proposal, which comes on the heels of the MF Global and Peregine fiascoes, would see regulators and and self-regulatory organizations granted direct electronic access to brokerages’ bank accounts. “This proposal is about ensuring customers have confidence that the funds they post as margin or collateral are fully segregated and protected,” Gensler said.

SEC’s Schapiro hits back at HFT report coming out of the U.K.: Hours after the release of a report sponsored by the British government that cautioned regulators to tread lightly when it comes to curbing high-frequency trading, Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Mary Schapiro warned about the threat HFT poses to markets. Citing the technology failure earlier this year at Knight Capital, Schapiro said overall investor confidence in the markets diminishes when HFT mishaps occur. Schapiro also stressed there can be no justification for the “socialization of losses” when HFT goes awry.