[W]e are concerned about how large banks have recently expanded their businesses into such fields as electric power production, oil refining and distribution, owning and operating of public assets such as ports and airports, and even uranium mining.After listing some disturbing examples, they observed:
According to legal scholar Saule Omarova, over the past five years, there has been a "quiet transformation of U.S. financial holding companies." These financial services companies have become global merchants that seek to extract rent from any commercial or financial business activity within their reach. They have used legal authority in Graham-Leach-Bliley to subvert the "foundational principle of separation of banking from commerce". . . .A "macro" risk indeed - not just to our economy but to our democracy and our individual and national sovereignty. Giant banks are buying up our country's infrastructure - the power and supply chains that are vital to the economy. Aren't there rules against that? And where are the banks getting the money?
It seems like there is a significant macro-economic risk in having a massive entity like, say JP Morgan, both issuing credit cards and mortgages, managing municipal bond offerings, selling gasoline and electric power, running large oil tankers, trading derivatives, and owning and operating airports, in multiple countries.