Hear those waves crashing? No, it's not your nature sounds album. That's the sound of a sea change in the way the government regulates financial products.
This year will be one of change for the financial industry, thanks to the mammoth financial reform law known as the Dodd-Frank Act. Many of those changes, involving reshuffling of regulatory agencies, restrictions on banks' investing activities and ways to wind down failing Wall Street giants won't be noticed by most consumers.
"The initial effects are going to be minor, because (regulators) have to interpret the laws and put them into place," says Tom Cosimano, a finance professor at Notre Dame's Mendoza College of Business.
As regulators get Dodd-Frank rolling in 2011, a few key financial reforms may have repercussions that consumers will feel for good and, in some cases, for ill. Here are a few of the biggest.
To read more visit: New financial regulations take hold in 2011.