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Don’t Fear the Beaver: Curbing Regulatory Restrictions on Canadian Banks Expanding into the U.S.

Updated: Mar 18


By: Robert O. Binkowski


The policy, economic, and historical differences between the American and Canadian banking sectors have created an environment where Canadian financial institutions can rapidly expand their stake in the American market. However, such a prospect is made difficult by an onerous regulatory system that places significant roadblocks on foreign banks entering the United States. While the United States and Canada already have deep economic and political ties, Canadian banks are subject to substantially the same restrictions as institutions coming from less regulatorily trustworthy and politically stable countries. This Note proposes that economic cooperation between the United States and Canada should be fostered by lifting certain regulatory restrictions on Canadian banks expanding into the United States. Specifically, this Note proposes (1) establishing a shared financial regulatory body, (2) working towards an accessible framework on banking law, and (3) altering policy priorities to open American banking to increased foreign investment.

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