#BCBS

26 04, 2024

DAILY042624

2024-04-26T16:53:42-04:00April 26th, 2024|2- Daily Briefing|

Treasury Slams PR Banking AML, Sanction Compliance

Providing an unusually blunt warning, Treasury Undersecretary Brian Nelson yesterday stated that further action is necessary in Puerto Rico to combat illicit finance, tighten supervision, and increase transparency.

BCBS Moves Forward With New Counterparty Risk Guidelines

As anticipated, the Basel Committee this week announced that it approved a consultation on proposed guidelines to strengthen bank counterparty credit risk management, replacing the Committee’s 1999 global guidance that failed to address the now-significant role of NBFIs and their heightened leverage.

HFSC Merger Hearing to Test Agency Proposals

The memo for Wednesday’s merger hearing before HFSC’s Financial Institution Subcommittee indicates that witnesses are senior attorneys from the OCC and FDIC sure to be grilled by Republicans on their agencies’ proposed merger-policy rewrites.

Daily042624.pdf

16 04, 2024

DAILY041624

2024-04-16T17:10:39-04:00April 16th, 2024|2- Daily Briefing|

House GOP Takes on New Merger Guidelines

The House Small Business Committee today sent a GOP letter to the FTC and Justice Department  strongly protesting new merger guidelines (see FSM Report MERGER13) on grounds that they sharply curtail needed small-business capital.

House Hikes Iran Sanctions

Working through a series of sanctions bills in the wake of recent geopolitical developments, the House yesterday voted 294-105 to advance H.R. 5921, a bill introduced by Rep. Huizenga (R-MI) that prohibits Treasury from authorizing transactions by U.S. financial institutions in connection with Iranian imports or exports other than food, medicine, and other humanitarian assistance.

House Passes Bill Targeting China-Iran Petroleum Trade

Continuing its response to recent geopolitical events, the House yesterday voted by a 383-11 margin to pass H.R. 5923, a bill from Reps. Lawler (R-NY) and Gottheimer (D-NJ) that would require the President to periodically determine if any Chinese financial institutions have purchased petroleum or petroleum products from Iran, stating that U.S. financial institutions also may not open or maintain certain accounts with Chinese institutions that have done so.

Warren Again Targets OCC Merger Decisions

Continuing recent attacks on the OCC’s approach to mergers, Sens. Warren (D-MA) and Blumenthal (D-CT) yesterday sent a letter to Acting Comptroller Hsu sharply criticizing the agency’s decision first to allow NYCB to acquire Flagstar bank and then do the same shortly thereafter for Signature.

OCC Toughens LCR, NSFR via New Reporting Requirements

The OCC today sought public comment as required by law for …

21 03, 2024

REFORM231

2024-03-21T15:27:18-04:00March 21st, 2024|5- Client Report|

Republicans Blast Basel, Global Standard-Setting

Today’s HFSC hearing on global governance featured expected Republican attacks on what they called the opaque nature of U.S. interactions with international organizations, with Chairman McHenry (R-NC) promoting a draft bill requiring regulators to report dealings with global standard-setting groups to Congress.  Much of the hearing otherwise focused on the Basel III Endgame Proposal, with criticism coming not just from the GOP but also some Democrats, especially Rep. Torres (D-NY) who denounced the “Europeanization” of the U.S. financial system.

REFORM231.pdf

7 03, 2024

DAILY030724

2024-03-07T16:51:03-05:00March 7th, 2024|2- Daily Briefing|

HFSC GOP Press Discount-Window Reform, Slow-Go on Liquidity Risk

Building on questioning at a recent HFSC hearing (see Client Report LIQUIDITY34), Financial Institutions Subcommittee Chair Barr (R-KY) led all Republican members of his subcommittee in a letter to Chair Powell, Chair Gruenberg, and Acting Comptroller Hsu urging them to address stigma and operational issues associated with the discount window.

Powell Reiterates: Capital Rules Will Change

Today’s Senate Banking hearing with Chair Powell covered much of the same ground as the Chair’s appearance before HFSC (see Client Report FEDERALRESERVE75) with Democrats focusing on housing affordability and Republicans expressing their satisfaction with Mr. Powell’s statement that the Basel III proposal may have to be withdrawn and re-proposed.

House Judiciary Now Says 12 Large Banks Colluded with FinCEN

Prior to the House Judiciary’s Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government hearing today on large bank “collusion,” the subcommittee yesterday published a report finding that FinCEN and the FBI engaged in backchannel discussions with large financial institutions to gather private financial data.

BCBS Proposes GSIB Window-Dressing Revisions

As anticipated, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision today released a consultation on revisions to the GSIB assessment framework concerning window dressing.

House Republican Targets Interest on Reserves

Following up on yesterday’s HFSC hearing (see Client Report FEDERALRESERVE75), Rep. Davidson (R-OH) has introduced legislation (H.R. 7562) to prevent Federal Reserve Banks from paying interest on excess reserves.

Daily030724.pdf

17 01, 2024

DAILY011724

2024-01-17T16:21:16-05:00January 17th, 2024|2- Daily Briefing|

CFPB Tries to Bring Overdraft Fees Under New Benchmark

Arguing that overdraft fees are a big-bank “junk-fee harvesting machine,” CFPB Director Chopra today released a long-awaited proposal to cap fees to what the agency considers a reasonable threshold.

Bowman Expands Basel Critique, Key Dem Now Points to Problems

In remarks today, FRB Gov. Bowman did not go quite as far as her colleague Chris Waller yesterday, but she nonetheless urged that the end-game rules be re-proposed after comments are taken into account.

Senate Banking GOP Again Urges Capital Proposal Withdrawal

Senate Banking Ranking Member Scott (R-SC) along with all Committee Republicans late yesterday sent a letter to FRB Chair Powell, FDIC Chairman Gruenberg, and Acting Comptroller Hsu once again calling on the regulators to withdraw the capital proposal (see FSM Report CAPITAL230).

Biden, Brown Praise CFPB Overdraft Proposal

Following the CFPB’s announcement of its proposed rule regarding overdraft fees today, President Biden again denounced “junk fees” as “exploitation,” and included the CFPB’s proposal in his administration’s efforts to lower costs for American consumers.

FRB/FDIC Provide Limited-Time Resolution-Plan Filing Flexibility

Reflecting a problem we identified in our assessment of the resolution-plan proposal (see FSM Report LIVINGWILL22), the FRB and FDIC today extended the resolution plan submission deadline for categories II and III banks from July 1, 2024 to March 31, 2025.

Global Regulators Turn to OTC-Derivative Margin Improvement

Following yesterday’s release with the CPMI focused on CCPs and clearing members, the Basel Committee and IOSCO today …

16 01, 2024

DAILY011624

2024-01-16T16:33:43-05:00January 16th, 2024|2- Daily Briefing|

Waller Raises Stakes for End-Game Finalization

Going beyond his longstanding critique of the end-game rules, FRB Gov. Waller today reflected industry comments and litigation plans, saying that he now thinks the proposal needs a “major overhaul” or should be withdrawn and reissued.  As we noted in our recent 2024 outlook, Gov. Bowman will surely side with this view, but Chair Powell holds the gavel when it comes to the end-game outcome at the Federal Reserve.  Mr. Waller also is personally opposed to the pending rewrite of debit-card interchange fees (see FSM Report INTERCHANGE12) because it forces the Fed to pick winners and losers.

Global Regulators Try Transparency as Cure to CCP-Margin Risk

The Basel Committee, CPMI, and IOSCO today released a long-planned consultation on CCP and clearing-member margining practices.  These are designed to limit the volatile and potentially-systemic liquidity stresses due to margining practices evident in 2020 and again after the Ukraine invasion, with the extent to which these further shift cost burdens from CCPs to clearing members their most controversial aspect.  Largely focused on transparency, the new approach would require CCPs to provide clearing members with margin-simulation tools that members would then make available to end-users to enhance margin-call preparedness.

Daily011624.pdf

7 12, 2023

DAILY120723

2023-12-07T16:42:01-05:00December 7th, 2023|2- Daily Briefing|

BIS: CCP Collateral Holdings Pose Systemic Risk

A new BIS study looks at the risk that the transformation of OTC markets to centrally-cleared ones has in turn transformed markets based in part on know-your-counterparty into those dependent principally on collateral backing margin positions – an inherently more fragile market structure.

White House Presses FHLB Affordable-Housing Action

In remarks today, National Economic Advisor Lael Brainard not only highlighted the Biden Administration’s actions to address housing affordability, but also mentioned plans for new financing programs.

Ambitious CFPB Regulatory Plans Come Into View

The CFPB’s fall 2023 regulatory agenda provides status updates for several significant rulemaking items.

Basel to Set IRR, Window-Dressing, Crypto Standards

The Basel Committee’s year-end meeting advanced plans to address interest-rate risk (IRR) with a concrete agreement to issue a new consultation later this month updating current global IRR standards (see FSM Report IRR7).

BIS Points to MMF Risk When Rates Rise

Another new BIS paper concludes that the record size of MMFs poses significant threat to dollar-funding market stability.

OCC Warns Banks of AI Risk, Possible Supervisory Action

Reflecting growing Congressional, regulatory, and industry concerns over AI, today’s OCC semiannual risk assessment for federal banks states that national banks should be mindful of AI risks as these fall under current supervisory procedures.

Senate GOP Goes for Gruenberg’s Jugular

Despite efforts by the FDIC to reassure critics about its independent investigation, Senate Banking Republicans today fired off a ferocious letter demanding that FDIC Chair Gruenberg immediately resign …

27 11, 2023

Daily112723

2023-11-27T16:53:58-05:00November 27th, 2023|2- Daily Briefing|

Global Regulators Unveil 2023 GSIB List Methodology

Following publication of the FSB’s updated 2023 GSIB list, the BCBS today published additional details of the assessment including denominators of the high-level indicators used to calculate bank scores, high-level indicators for each bank in the sample, cut-off scores, and thresholds used to allocate GSIBs to buckets for calculating higher loss-absorbency requirements.

Carstens Presses for Unified Ledger, CBDC

Pointing to the speed of AI adoption in sharp contrast to financial-system innovation, BIS General Manager Agustín Carstens has reiterated his call for central bank “unified ledgers.” These would serve as a “network of networks” digital infrastructure, with Mr. Carstens indicating that the result would enable instantaneous payment and settlement of any transaction, use of smart contracts and composability, and seamless integration and automation of digital asset payments.

SEC Finalizes Massive, Controversial ABS-Conflict Standards

Thirteen years after the Dodd-Frank Act demanded it (see FSM Report ABS17), the SEC today voted 4-1 to approve controversial conflict-of-interest standards for asset-backed securities (ABS). The final rule is significantly amended from the proposal, so much so that SEC Commissioner Peirce said that a new proposal was required prior to final adoption.

 

Daily112723.pdf

3 10, 2023

DAILY100323

2023-10-03T16:38:58-04:00October 3rd, 2023|2- Daily Briefing|

Hsu Notes Benefits of International Data Hub, Warns of Nonbank Risks

In remarks today, Acting Comptroller Hsu focused on the benefits of the BIS International Data Hub, noting for example that it provides national authorities with a horizontal view of key risks affecting the global financial system difficult to obtain elsewhere.

Basel Sees End-Game in Sight, US Off Late List

Finally taking the U.S. off the tardy list, the Basel Committee today updated its Basel III implementation dashboard, finding that as of Q3 2023 the US, along with the EU, UK, China, Switzerland, South Africa, and Hong Kong are now working to adopt revisions to the credit valuation adjustment and operational risk frameworks, the standardized approach for credit risk, the minimum requirements for market risk, and the output floor – i.e., Basel’s end-game.

Daily100323.pdf

30 03, 2023

DAILY033023

2023-03-30T17:27:30-04:00March 30th, 2023|2- Daily Briefing|

Yellen Calls for Bank, Nonbank Regulatory Rewrite

Implicitly confirming press reports that the White House will soon press for tougher bank rules, Treasury Secretary Yellen today said that, as beneficial as the rules imposed since the great financial crisis have been, more stringent standards are necessary.

Hsu Sets Dual OCC Mission: Safety, Fairness

In remarks today, Acting Comptroller Hsu emphatically echoed statements of other top regulators that the banking system is safe and sound, emphasizing that the OCC is monitoring the market and is prepared to use its tools to protect the system.

Basel Updates Global Liquidity, Operational Standards

Although the U.S. has still not even proposed the Basel IV “end-game” standards, the Basel Committee continues to refine them and today issued its latest set of FAQs.

White House Sets Reg-Reform Agenda

As anticipated early this morning, the White House has issued a statement calling on federal banking agencies to roll back rules the President describes as weakening “common-sense bank safety and supervision.”

Senate Dems Press Agencies to Strengthen Capital Rules

Following this week’s hearings (see Client Report REFORM218), Sens. Warren (D-MA), Blumenthal (D-CT), and Duckworth (D-IL) sent a letter to Vice Chair Barr, Chairman Gruenberg, and Acting Comptroller Hsu urging them to strengthen large-bank capital requirements.

CFPB Stands By Its Small-Business Reporting Rules

Despite strong industry and GOP opposition, the CFPB today finalized its small business data collection rulemaking in a sweeping final rule the Bureau says will increase transparency in small business lending, promote economic …

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