Most of America’s 4969 are owned by holding companies, so the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 is a key banking law. But do the prescriptions of six decades ago may not still make sense for the banks of today. The act for most of them creates a costly and arguably unnecessary double layer of regulation. Its original main purpose of stopping interstate banking is now completely irrelevant. One of its biggest effects has been to expand the regulatory power of the Federal Reserve–is that good or bad? Does it simply serve as an anti-competitive shield for existing banks against new competition? Some banks have gotten rid of their holding companies–will that be a trend? This conference generated an informed and lively exchange among a panel of banking experts, including the recent Acting Comptroller of the Currency, Keith Noreika, and was chaired by R Street’s Alex Pollock.