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The Federal Reserve on Wednesday proposed loosening a rule that had banned banks from certain short-term trading activities.

Why it matters: This would further weaken the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill that was designed to prevent another financial crisis, just days after Congress made its own cuts.

The Fed's move is aimed at The Volcker Rule, named for former Fed chair Paul Volcker, which was designed to stop banks from making speculative investments.

  • The proposed changes would create three categories on banks, with restrictions remaining tightest on those with $10 billion or more in trading assets and liabilities.
  • Fed chair Jay Powell said: "The proposal will address some of the uncertainty and complexity that now make it difficult for firms to know how best to comply, and for supervisors to know that they are in compliance. Our goal is to replace overly complex and inefficient requirements with a more streamlined set of requirements.”
  • Marcus Stanley, policy director at the left-leaning Americans for Financial Reform, said: “These proposals could turn the Volcker Rule into a dead letter, a regulation that would not meaningfully restrict trading activities at the banks whose problems could drag down the entire financial system – again.”
  • America is nearing the 10-year anniversary of the financial crisis.

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Supreme Court rejects GOP push to cut absentee ballot deadline in N.C.

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The Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected a request by Republicans to shorten North Carolina's deadline for mail-in ballots from nine to three days.

The big picture: This is the latest of a series of decisions over mail-in ballot deadlines in various states.

Hurricane Zeta makes landfall on Louisiana coast as Category 2 storm

A satellite image of Hurricane Zeta. Photo: National Hurricane Center/NOAA

Hurricane Zeta is "battering southeastern Louisiana and southern Mississippi with life-threatening storm surge, high winds, and heavy rain," per the National Hurricane Center.

What's happening: The hurricane was producing maximum sustained winds of nearly 110 mph and stronger gusts after making landfall on the southeastern coast of Louisiana as a Category 2 storm earlier Wednesday.

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