Stripping away government regulation of banking would help both consumers and businesses. Consumers would be able to obtain a mix of financial services tailored to their individual needs for less cost and with greater security than is currently the case. Businesses could more easily acquire loans, insurance, and capital, all necessary for operating in a more competitive and integrated world economy.

But those benefits will only be realized if government steps aside and allows banks and customers to manage their own affairs. Financial institutions in other countries often are freer than those in America, putting many foreign firms at a competitive advantage over American ones. It is time to establish a level playing field by removing counterproductive regulation of American banks.