WASHINGTON — Bankers breathed a sigh of relief Wednesday after regulators unveiled a new proposal on securitization standards that omitted a controversial down payment requirement. But the agencies also made it clear that the debate over that issue is far from over.

Tucked away inside the new, softer proposed criteria for "qualified residential mortgages" — which are exempt from credit risk retention — was a question about whether regulators should restore a down payment restriction, this time effectively suggesting a tougher 30% ratio.

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