April 24, 2014

Can bank regulators keep silence on the conversion to equity probabilities of cocos?

Sir, I have one question in reference to Alice Ross’ and Christopher Thompson’s “German banks line up to join coco party”, April 24.

Do regulators have any moral or formal duty to reveal to any interested buyers of cocos if they suspect the possibilities of these having to be converted into bank equity being very high? I say this because if so, and if they keep silent on it, that would make them sort of accomplices of bankers. Would it not?

Of course banks need capital, lots of it, but tricking investors into it, does not seem like the right way for getting it.