Sweeping overhaul of financial rules now law in US

Updated at 4:34 pm on 22 July 2010

United States President Barack Obama has signed into law a sweeping overhaul of financial rules, in response to the global financial crisis.

The law tightens mortgage and consumer lending rules and establishes a new consumer protection agency, among other provisions.

It restricts the ability of banks to trade in risky financial instruments and gives the federal government the power to break up large financial institutions.

They are being called the biggest reforms since the Depression.

Republicans opposed the bill, saying it would hit businesses trying to create jobs.

At a signing ceremony on Wednesday, Mr Obama said the reforms will help protect consumers, empower investors and bring more transparency to financial markets.

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