In addition, the panel's influence on Wall Street reforms could be minimal. Congress is already pushing ahead with bills to enact the biggest overhaul of Wall Street regulations since the Great Depression. The House of Representatives passed its reform bill late last year and the Senate is poised to take up its reform measure in the coming weeks – a final bill is expected to emerge within months.
Nevertheless, the panel is pressing on with its huge workload. At the group's first public hearing in January – featuring executives from four of Wall Street's biggest banks – the commission's chairman Phil Angelides stated, "People are angry and they have a right to be."
"If we ignore history," he noted, "we'll be doomed to bail it out again."