Thinking back over 25 years in banking, the most highly regulated industry in the United States, I recall sitting in the boardroom of the old United California Bank. A senior executive was proclaiming the end of the world because a Regulation Q proposal was being debated that would allow for the unthinkable: interest on demand deposits.

In those days, banks and bankers relished regulation. Competition was kept in a narrow band, and the customer was a hostage of the inefficiencies created by governmental oversight.

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