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Friday, September 14, 2012

Bernanke Speaks to Community Bank Basel III Concerns

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke yesterday tried to assure community banks that the agencies’ proposals to implement the Basel III regulatory capital reforms would not place requirements on them that are intended for only complex internationally active banks.
In terms of Basel III, of course, it’s not one-size-fits-all. Many of the most difficult, complex regulations apply only to the largest and most complex institutions. For the smaller banks, what our proposed rule does is try to strengthen their capital, and many small banks will already meet those capital requirements.
Bernanke emphasized that Fed officials recognize the important role community banks play in the economy, and they want to hear community bankers' views on Basel III issues.

He noted that two members of the Fed’s supervision committee have experience as either a community banker or a community bank supervisor, and they are “particularly interested in making sure that the rules are not excessively onerous and … that we take into account the needs of community banks when we put out the final rule.”

Watch Bernanke’s press conference.

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