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U.S. ratings agencies, such as Standard and Poor’s, must now comply with tougher new rules set down by the SEC.
U.S. ratings agencies, such as Standard and Poor’s, must now comply with tougher new rules set down by the SEC.
(BRENDAN MCDERMID/REUTERS)

The big hole in Washington’s rating agency reform

Washington has missed a trick with rating agency reform. On Wednesday the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission finally approved new rules for judging the riskiness of asset-backed bonds. Some are modestly helpful. But measures like imposing unsolicited ratings on deals would offer more robust changes – and may foster much-needed competition for Fitch, Moody’s and S&P.