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Hollande Maintains Bank-Split Plan, Sees Reform as ’Complicated’

French President Francois Hollande reiterated his plan to separate banks’ retail and investment activities, while saying it may be “complicated” to implement without hurting the country’s banking system.

“We will do it and we will do it swiftly,” Hollande said, according to an interview in Marianne weekly magazine to be published tomorrow. The head of Credit Agricole SA, France’s biggest bank, Jean-Paul Chifflet, said today he’d “negotiate inch by inch” until the bill is published Dec. 19.

Separately, Hollande said 2013 will be a “tough” year for the economy. The Socialist president said he believed business leaders and entrepreneurs “see me as their adversary,” the weekly quoted him as saying.

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