WASHINGTON — In 2012, the Federal Reserve issued a proposal designed to force changes at banks and systemically important nonbanks that showed early signs of financial distress.

Since then, the proposal — required by the Dodd-Frank Act and hailed by many as an important backstop to ensure regulators keep a close watch on bank holding companies — appears to have vanished. The Fed has made little to no mention of it, and it's not clear when or even if the central bank plans to finalize it.

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