WASHINGTON — Nearly 10 years since the onset of the financial crisis, the once all-consuming demand for improved safety and soundness in banking has been replaced by a single-minded pursuit of a streamlined regulatory structure emphasizing economic growth.

Banks are all but pleading for regulatory relief, hoping it can help stave off a new wave of consolidation in the industry, which they claim is driven by compliance costs from all these new rules. But whether regulatory relief — if it ever happens — results in lower compliance costs is an open question.

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