A top Democrat has slammed financial regulators, accusing them of being “asleep at the switch” as the COVID-19 pandemic threatens the housing market and the broader economy.

In a letter to leaders at the Federal Reserve, the National Credit Union Administration, the FDIC, and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said the agencies were not doing enough to prepare for threats to financial stability.

“Your agencies must ensure that our financial system is sage and strong, so that this public health and economic crisis does not turn into a financial crisis,” Brown wrote. “Yet, bank and credit union exposure to deteriorating economic conditions, lax regulation, and the public health risks of managing a financial crisis and resolving failed institutions during a deadly pandemic raise serious financial stability concerns. I am deeply concerned that the system is blinking red and, just as in the lead-up to the 2007-2008 financial crisis, you are asleep at the switch.”

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