[caption id="attachment_3653" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="President Barack Obama signs the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection financial reform bill at the Ronald Reagan at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, Wednesday, July 21, 2010. Looking on are from left, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)"][/caption]

Wall Street and banking in America as you know it is all about to change. President Obama signed the big Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection bill into law this morning. Some of the big changes:

  • -The government can break up companies that threaten the U.S. financial system
  • -The law closes up loopholes that helped companies skirt laws, eventually leading to the economic crisis that started about two years ago
  • -A new agency will be looking out for consumers' financial transactions.

Getting this law through Congress was no easy matter. Republicans were strongly opposed to giving the government enormous powers to regulate private businesses.