Document Type


Publication Date



I examine data from 1992 to 2015 to assess the Dodd-Frank Act’s impact on the performance of U.S. depository institutions, thrifts in particular. Ceteris paribus, the average FDIC-regulated institution experienced a decline in profitability as measured by pre-tax return on assets (ROA) following the Act’s passage, but the decline was concentrated among commercial banks. Small thrifts increased pre-tax profitability, after controlling for other factors including weak economic growth. Depository institution loan quality improved after Dodd-Frank, less so for small thrifts but more so for large thrifts. Efficiency ratios, which regulatory costs affect, increased, more for thrifts than banks.


This is the accepted version of an article to be published in Pennsylvania Economic Review, Volume 24, No. 1, Spring 2017. Copyright by the Pennsylvania Economic Association.