U.S. President Barack Obama is applauded by Vice President Joe Biden and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi as he addresses a joint session of Congress in Washington, February 24, 2009. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
U.S. President Barack Obama Wednesday called on lawmakers to create tougher new financial industry regulations to prevent similar crisis.
"Strong financial markets require clear rules of the road, not to hinder financial institutions but to protect consumers and investors and ultimately to keep those financial institutions strong," Obama told the press after meeting with his economic team.
Obama noted financial institutions that pose serious risks, systemic risks, to the market "should be subject to serious oversight by the government."
"To rebuild trust in our markets, we must redouble our efforts to promote openness, transparency and plain language throughout our financial system," said the president. "We need strong and uniform supervision of financial products marketed to investors and consumers."
"We must demand strict accountability, starting at the top. Executives who violate the public trust must be held responsible," he said.
Obama noted that the work of constructing a new regulatory framework will not be easy and reform will not happen overnight.
"But we must never forget that our market has always been the engine of America's success, rewarding innovators and risk-takers, creating opportunities for generations of Americans, and prosperity that is the envy of the world," he said.
(Xinhua News Agency February 26, 2009)