) --

General Electric

(GE) - Get Report

has scored another big lobbying victory, getting the House of Representatives to amend its regulatory revamp to protect it from either regulation by the

Federal Reserve

, or having to spin off its giant financial arm,

The Wall Street Journal

reported Friday.

Sweeping reforms proposed by the U.S. Treasury Department earlier this year would have required the Fed to regulate all large financial institutions, in an attempt to avoid a repeat of


(AIG) - Get Report

's blowup last year. Many people believe AIG, which is the largest recipient of Federal bailout money, would not have been allowed to take on so much risk if it had been supervised by the Fed. Others note that Fed regulation did little to prevent a meltdown at


(C) - Get Report

, the fifth-largest recipient of bailout money,

, after General Motors, Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE) according to ProPublica


Though General Electric watchers initially felt the company would be forced to spin-off its financial unit to avoid regulation by the Fed, GE executives have expressed confidence for several months that they would not have to take such a measure. The amendment exempting GE, which also protects

Pitney Bowes

(PBI) - Get Report

,was pushed by their home state Congressman Jim Himes (D.,Conn), the


reported. The House could vote on the proposed legislation Friday, the



In addition to its success in fighting Fed regulation of its financial services unit,

General Electric also appears to have avoided tougher taxes on foreign earnings

, which would have cost it more than $4 billion in earnings in 2008.

While General Electric dodges government restrictions, it is

going after an increasing share of government business

. It has also leaned heavily on government guarantees of its debt under the Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program, an initiative that's also benefited large banks including

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report


Wells Fargo

(WFC) - Get Report

among others.

In order to win points with legislators and regulators, General Electric has repeatedly emphasized its importance to the U.S. economy, both as a lender and an employer. The argument appears to be working.


Written by Dan Freed in New York


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