Accelerating Inflation, Technological Innovation, and the Decreasing Effectiveness of Banking Regulation

Edward J. Kane

NBER Working Paper No. 638 (Also Reprint No. r0229)
Issued in March 1981
NBER Program(s):   ME

To explain the evolution of U.S. deposit institutions and markets in the 1960sand 1970s, we feed into the regulatory dialectic assumptions about the objectives of federal banking regulation and about outside forces that disturb the adjustment process. The disturbing exogenous forces are accelerating change in the technological and market environment of commercial banking and increasing uncertainty concerning the future speed of enviromental change. We hypothesize that, in the face of these environmental changes, the adaptive efficiency shown on average by deposit-institution managers is greater than that shown by managers of the several competing banking agencies. Incorporating this differential adaptive capacity into the regulatory dialectic helps us to understand how increases in the pace of environmental change and in the degree of environmental uncertainty led regulatee responses to come more quickly and regulatory responses to come more slowly. The bottom line is that, when the environment changes rapidly and becomes more uncertain, traditional forms of U.S. banking regulation can be overwhelmed by technological and regulation-induced innovation.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w0638

Published: Kane, Edward J. "Accelerating Inflation, Technological Innovation, and the Decreasing Effectiveness of Banking Regulation." The Journal of Finance, Vol. XXXVI, No. 2, (May 1981), pp. 355-367. citation courtesy of

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