WASHINGTON - Securities underwriting by banks is not a risky business, and what's more, it never was, according a study published Wednesday by the American Bankers Association.

To back up the trade group's push for repeal of Glass-Steagall restrictions on bank securities underwriting, the ABA study asserts that securities activities by bank holding companies have reduced risk by allowing diversification. Even before the Glass-Steagall Act was passed in 1933, commercial banks involved in securities experienced lower rates of failure, the study said.

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