modernization bill, but one thing they are celebrating is victory over Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

The Bentonville, Ark., retail giant has symbolized the worst fears of small-town bankers since it unveiled plans in June to buy an Oklahoma thrift. A provision in the financial modernization bill that would close a legal loophole allowing commercial concerns to own a single thrift has quieted concerns that Wal-Mart would invade bankers' turf and steal their customers.

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