Today, after nine months of intense and sometimes-frantic preparation, credit card issuers must be in compliance with most provisions of a law that fundamentally changed some industry practices.

Whether it will fundamentally change the industry itself depends on whom you ask. Ironically, credit card executives, who have long complained about the effects of the new restrictions, have finished the heavy lifting of compliance and are now pragmatic, even optimistic. And now some consumer advocates, while applauding the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act, aren't satisfied it goes far enough.

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