Congress's banking chiefs are spending a lot of time these days pow-wowing over the shape of financial regulation post-Armageddon, with the creation of a systemic risk regulatory function a high priority for both President Obama and Congress.

Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Obama seem to favor deputizing the Federal Reserve with the power; others are less sure of whether the Fed's powers should be expanded further. Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) and other Democrats have questioned the Fed's track record in regulating and protecting consumers in light of AIG.

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