Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Is Final Basel III Just Around the Corner?

"The output floor is the final piece of the jigsaw”

Author: David Schwartz

In speeches on April 5 and May 25, 2017, William Coen, Secretary General of the Basel Committee, hinted that final Basel III standards are “just around the corner.” Despite a setback in January 2017 in which the Committee members could not reach accord on the calibration of the aggregate output floor, Coen signaled optimism for the upcoming meeting the Committee in June. In a May 25 speech, Coen announced that ‘based on feedback from the consultative process and the results of our impact studies, the Committee has largely completed the technical work needed to revise the framework.” Despite this optimism, calibration of the output floor still remains somewhat of a sticking point, one that Coen says “is the final piece of the jigsaw.”

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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

FDIC's Hoenig Offers Market-Based Cure for Regulatory Ills

Urges Openness to Regulatory Alternatives

Author: David Schwartz

In a keynote address before the Systemic Risk and Organization of the Financial System Conference in California on May 12, 2017 FDIC Vice Chairman Tom Hoenig announced his novel market-based proposal to strengthen the financial system and provide regulatory relief and foster long-term economic growth.  According to Hoenig, even after the financial crisis, "the U.S. financial system remains heavily subsidized, increasingly concentrated, and, despite a host of new efforts to safeguard the system, it continues to be vulnerable to inevitable financial shocks.” Mr. Hoenig has long been a proponent of a new organizational model that would turn the industry back toward capitalism. The Vice Chairman’s proposal is a plan whose goal is to "ensure that the public safety net is not expanded beyond the traditional banking activities that it was originally designed to support and to restore open market competition within the financial services industry.”

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Sunday, May 7, 2017

CFTC Seeks Input on Simplifying Regulations

Author: David Schwartz

In a speech before the US Chamber of Commerce’s 11th Annual Capital Market Summit, the CFTC’s acting Chairman J. Christopher Giancarlo announced a new project to simplify the agency’s regulations. Remarking that, "America’s derivatives markets are struggling, in some cases, under the weight of flawed and excessive regulation,” Chairman Giancarlo introduced the CFTC’s new focus on reinterpreting its regulatory mission consistent with the goals of the Trump Administration’s Executive Order on regulation. To achieve these goals, the CFTC will be seeking input from industry on where existing CFTC regulations can be simplified and made less costly.

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Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Basel Sharpens Focus on Banking Supervision

Will also improve confidence in prudential ratios

Author: David Schwartz

The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision has announced its work program themes for 2017 and 2018 to include a greater focus on strengthening supervision by member jurisdictions. In addition, the Committee still remains dedicated to its core goals of:

 

  • finalizing its existing policy initiatives; 
  • monitoring emerging risks;
  • assessing the effects of the Committee's post-crisis reforms; and 
  • ensuring full, timely, and consistent implementation of the Committee's standards.
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Sunday, April 23, 2017

Are Bank Regulations Harming Small Businesses?

Fed Survey Finds Small Businesses Face Credit Challenges

Author: David Schwartz

A Federal Reserve Report published on April 18, 2017 found that U.S. small businesses are facing hurdles in obtaining much-needed financing for growth. The study indicated that small businesses presently face significantly more stringent credit conditions when approaching their traditional sources of loans for equipment and expansion. The Fed report itself does not point the finger at regulation as the cause for this restriction in the ability of small businesses to access credit. However, large banks have had to tighten credit conditions significantly as a result of increased capital requirements, liquidity restrictions, and stress tests. Because these big banks are the primary source of the for all business financing in the U.S., and the number one source of loans to small businesses, any restrictions on the flow of financing arising out of new banking regulation will perforce affect small businesses. 

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