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Tim Quast
Traders Magazine Online News

We're All HFTs Now

In this guest commentary, author Tim Quast looks back at the history of HFT and how the market has evolved to where many firms now fit the definition of high-frequency trader.

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May 26, 2005

How Congress Can Reverse Rule

By Gregory Bresiger

It is very rare that Congress reverses the decision of a federal agency, but it is not impossible. Indeed, Congress provided a procedure back in the 1990s, allowing the lawmakers to overturn the work of regulators. The Congressional Review Act (CRA) of 1996 is an unusual procedure that is not used very often, says David Franasiak, an STA lobbyist and an attorney with the Washington firm of Williams and Jensen.

Franasiak said the CRA is a joint resolution that provides a speedy way of overturning a commission's ruling. "The CRA requires the resolution of disapproval must be introduced within 60 calendar days after the rule is published," according to a memo Williams and Jensen prepared on CRA. "The CRA sets forth fast-track procedures by which Congress can reject agency regulations. The CRA is very similar to other expedited procedures for Congress."

Senate precedent has been to render a measure privileged if the statute (in this case the CRA) establishes a time limit for consideration of the resolution. Franasiak says it is normally difficult to pass a CRA.

Still, Rep. Richard Baker, (R-La.), chairman of the House subcommittee on Capital Markets, has threatened possible legislation to reverse the trade-through decision.