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Darling: Rock won't be sold to big bank

CHANCELLOR Alistair Darling signalled yesterday that he would block large banks from buying Northern Rock or the government&rsquo;s stakes in Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group in a bid to promote competition.<br /><br />Speaking at a dinner hosted by employers&rsquo; organisation the CBI, Darling said the government would sell its banking stakes in a way that &ldquo;supports new banks entering the market&rdquo;.<br /><br />Northern Rock is likely to be split into a &ldquo;good bank&rdquo; housing deposits worth &pound;20bn, with the government holding on to the bank&rsquo;s toxic assets on a more long-term basis. Darling is also pondering further measures to smooth entry to the market for new players, Treasury sources said.