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Glass-Steagall Fans Plan New Assault If Volcker Rule Deemed Weak

Five U.S. agencies will finish the Volcker rule tomorrow after more than three years of Wall Street resistance to its limits on trading and investing. Lawmakers and their allies who want to rein in big banks are ready to pounce if it isn’t strict enough.

Politicians and advocates -- some Democrats, some Republicans -- who blame the 2008 financial crisis on deregulation express concern that the Volcker rule won’t adequately block banks from making risky bets with their own money. If they deem the rule too weak, they say it will add fuel to a push to reinstate a Depression-era law known as Glass-Steagall that until 1999 split banks and securities firms.