Though the Obama administration released new details Monday about its plan to buy toxic assets, critical questions remain unanswered, and they likely will not be cleared up until the plan begins operation.

Chief among them were whether investors, through an auction process run by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), would offer high enough bids to entice bankers to sell illiquid assets and whether federal regulators would force them to participate if they balked at selling.

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