Friday, February 17, 2012

Banks Spent Record $62 Million To Wine & Dine Politicians

Commercial banks spent nearly $62 million last year on lobbying, another record total for an industry that has become one of the most active voices in the political arena.

While their return on that investment is difficult to quantify, this much is clear: The financial industry’s spending helped slow down the pace of new regulation and gained it at least a few partial victories in a year filled with anti-bank rhetoric.

Last year’s lobbying expenditures by the commercial banking industry were up 9 percent from the year before, marking the sixth straight year of increased spending, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics.

The financial sector as a whole spent more than $472 million.

That made the sector the third-biggest lobbying spender, behind the health care industry and general business associations like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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