The Dodd-Frank Act reform law gave a group of regulators, the Financial Stability Oversight Council, the task of identifying and responding to risks that could threaten the nation's financial health. It is this council that will decide which nonbanks are systemically important, and thus subject to loads of extra scrutiny.

Taking its first step, the council issued a preproposal, what's known as an "advance notice of proposed rulemaking." This is what regulators do when they either have no idea how to proceed or they can't agree on what to do.

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