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Inside Washington (05/25/2010)
* WASHINGTON (5/26/10)--The New York Times reported Tuesday that the “Volcker Rule,” an Obama administration plan to ban banks from certain high-risk trading practices, is “very likely” to be included in the final financial regulatory reform bill that is expected to be worked out between House and Senate conferees by summer. The article said that while House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-Mass.), a key player in reconciling the House and Senate versions of financial reform law, gave the Volcker rule high odds for being included, he on the other hand said a separate provision to force banks to spin off their derivatives businesses "goes too far." His pointed opposition reduces that provisions chances of making it in to the final package, at least in an unaltered state. Frank said banks would be prohibited from very risky derivatives activities by the Volcker Rule and that the derivative spin-off just wouldn’t be necessary… * WASHINGTON (5/26/10)—When the House and Senate conference committee meets to work out a final financial regulatory reform bill, Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) wants to work in a provision to bar any financial firm that underwrites an asset-backed security from betting against that security.(American Banker May 25) On the Senate floor Monday, Levin said financial firms cannot be allowed to continue this practice, which, he said, has undermined the U.S. financial markets. He said the out-right ban could be added by strengthening the proprietary trading provisions offered by Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and therefore could be taken up by the conference committee. Under conference rules, lawmakers may work out differences between a House bill and a Senate bill, but no provision can be added if related language does not already exist in one version…


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