Among the power players in Washington, corporate treasurers are conspicuously absent. But when the tools they need to manage risk–over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives–were threatened by the wave of regulatory reform, treasurers reacted quickly and effectively. And they have moved the playing field, even though the outcome is still uncertain.

Legislators' proposals to eliminate over-the-counter trading of derivatives and force all derivatives trading onto exchanges are part of the fallout from the credit crisis.

A House bill and Senate drafts "started out to be more aggressive, but members of Congress were absolutely bombarded with objections from end users," reports Pat Ryder, director of financial risk management at $5 billion Eastman Chemical Co. in Kingsport, Tenn. "End users have never been more united. They pushed back effectively."

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