WASHINGTON The House approved a package of Dodd-Frank Act tweaks Tuesday evening, including a closely watched provision to clarify Federal Reserve capital standards for insurers.
The legislation, which also included several other tweaks to the financial reform law, passed the House by a wide margin of 327 to 97. The capital standards fix, related to the so-called Collins amendment of Dodd-Frank, sailed through the Senate this summer as a standalone bill, following regulators' designation of several insurance companies as systemically important.
Some Democrats have objected to including the additional measures in the legislation, and it's unclear whether the Senate will take up the broader package.
"The door for Senate passage of the package this week is rapidly closing in what can only be described as a childish power struggle between Democrats and House Republicans," Jaret Seiberg, an analyst at Guggenheim Securities, wrote in a note to clients Wednesday, adding that Democrats are more displeased about the packaging of the provisions than the specifics of the changes.
Still, analysts predicted that the Collins amendment clarification would be signed into law by the end of the year, most likely as a standalone bill.
"A number of members in the House voiced their expectation that the end result will be the House simply passing the Senate bill later in the year, likely during the lame duck," said Edward Mills, an analyst a FBR Capital Markets, in a client note. "Ultimately, yesterday's events show a clear willingness to act on the issue and show that the fix is coming."
The additional measures in the House version of the bill include exemptions for collateralized loan obligations under the Volcker Rule and for end-users from margin requirements under swaps rules. A third provision alters the calculation for certain "points and fees" under the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's qualified mortgage rule by excluding some costs.