Phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase (PEPCK) governs the rate-limiting step in gluconeogenesis. Glucocorticoids and adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (cAMP) increase PEPCK gene transcription and gluconeogenesis, whereas insulin has the opposite effect. Insulin is dominant, since it prevents cAMP and glucocorticoid-stimulated transcription. Glucocorticoid and cAMP response elements have been located in the PEPCK gene and now a 15-base pair insulin-responsive sequence (IRS) is described. Evidence for a binding activity that recognizes this sequence is presented.