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Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty speaks to media prior to a provincial, territorial and federal finance ministers meeting in Victoria, B.C., Dec. 19, 2011.GEOFF HOWE

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty will find out Thursday whether his government has the Supreme Court of Canada's blessing to move ahead with a national securities regulator.

The Supreme Court issued a notice Monday confirming that the much-anticipated decision will be released Thursday morning.

The Conservative government has asked the court to answer a single question: Is the proposed Canadian Securities Act within the legislative authority of the Parliament of Canada?

The draft legislation was made public by the federal government in 2010 in an effort to replace a patchwork of provincial and territorial securities commissions with a single, national regulator. While Ontario supported Ottawa's plan, six other provinces argued against the initiative, insisting the current system of co-operation between provinces and territories is working well.

Mr. Flaherty has repeatedly said that the lack of a national securities regulator hurts Canada's reputation internationally.

Under the new leadership of Premier Allison Redford, the Progressive Conservative government of Alberta said this month that it would "live with" a national securities regulator if the court rules in Ottawa's favour.