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8 08, 2022

m080822

2023-01-04T13:13:40-05:00August 8th, 2022|6- Client Memo|

Procyclical Capital Rules and the Economy’s Discontent

In our recent paper outlining the holistic-capital regime regulators should quickly deploy, we noted that current rules are often counter-productive to their avowed goal of bank solvency without peril to prosperity.  However, one acute problem in the regulatory-capital rulebook – procyclicality – does particularly problematic damage when the economy faces acute challenges – i.e., now.  None of the pending one-off capital reforms addresses procyclicality and, in fact, several might make it even worse.  This memo shows how and then what should be quickly done to reinstate the counter-cyclicality all the regulators say they seek.

m080822.pdf

8 08, 2022

Karen Petrou: Procyclical Capital Rules and the Economy’s Discontent

2023-01-04T13:14:40-05:00August 8th, 2022|The Vault|

In our recent paper outlining the holistic-capital regime regulators should quickly deploy, we noted that current rules are often counter-productive to their avowed goal of bank solvency without peril to prosperity.  However, one acute problem in the regulatory-capital rulebook – procyclicality – does particularly problematic damage when the economy faces acute challenges – i.e., now.  None of the pending one-off capital reforms addresses procyclicality and, in fact, several might make it even worse.  This memo shows how and then what should be quickly done to reinstate the counter-cyclicality all the regulators say they seek.

Last Thursday, the Fed set new, often-higher risk-based capital (RBC) ratios for the largest banks.  The reason for this untimely capital hike lies in the interplay between the RBC rules and the Fed’s CCAR stress test.  Packaged into the stress capital buffer (SCB), these rules determine how much RBC each large bank must hold to ensure it can stay in the agencies’ good graces and, to its thinking, better still distribute capital.

Put very simply, the more RBC, the less RWAS – i.e., the risk-weighted assets, against which capital rules are measured.  The higher the weighting, the lower a capital-strained bank’s appetite to hold it unless risk is high enough also to offset the leverage ratio’s cost – at which point the bank is taking a lot of unnecessary risk to sidestep another set of unintended contradictions in the capital construct.  As a Fed study concludes, all but the very strongest banks sit on their …

11 01, 2022

FedFin Assessment: Powell Sidesteps Many Challenges, Promises Much

2023-04-24T15:54:45-04:00January 11th, 2022|The Vault|

As promised yesterday (see Client Report FEDERALRESERVE66), we listened closely today to gauge the extent to which Chairman Powell faces a serious challenge to reconfirmation. At least as far as Senate Banking Members are concerned, he doesn’t. Although Sen. Warren (D-MA) and other Democrats lambasted Mr. Powell over insider-trading allegations and what they called the Fed’s unresponsiveness, all still were cordial and seemed generally to blame the problem on institutional failures, not the chairman. Sen. Menendez (D-NJ) called the Fed’s diversity policy “outrageous,” but also does not seem inclined….

The full report is available to retainer clients. To find out how you can sign up for the service, click here.…

11 01, 2022

FEDERALRESERVE67

2023-04-24T15:54:31-04:00January 11th, 2022|5- Client Report|

FedFin Assessment:  Powell Sidesteps Many Challenges, Promises Much

As promised yesterday (see Client Report FEDERALRESERVE66), we listened closely today to gauge the extent to which Chairman Powell faces a serious challenge to reconfirmation.  At least as far as Senate Banking Members are concerned, he doesn’t.  Although Sen. Warren (D-MA) and other Democrats lambasted Mr. Powell over insider-trading allegations and what they called the Fed’s unresponsiveness, all still were cordial and seemed generally to blame the problem on institutional failures, not the chairman.  Sen. Menendez (D-NJ) called the Fed’s diversity policy “outrageous,” but also does not seem inclined to block confirmation based solely on this issue.  As anticipated, most senators focused on inflation and the economy; Mr. Powell often reflected this by affirming that the Fed will soon cease to be quite as accommodative.  Senate Banking Chairman Brown (D-OH) urged Mr. Powell not to let up on economic stimulus, also complaining about big-bank consolidation, capital distribution, bank profits, and the need for more lending to “Main Street.”

FEDERALRESERVE67.pdf

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