April 19, 2014

Regulators, accept gallantly you messed it all up with the risk-weighted capital requirements for banks. And amend these... please!

Sir I refer to John Dizard’s “Brussels spends too little time on reforms that could help SMEs” April 19.

Decades ago someone, I do not remember who, commented on how a board would take much less time deciding on a several million dollar technically difficult investment, than on the amount to be spent on serving coffee during their meetings.

So when John Dizard writes that “so much time gets spent on minor issues, such as high speed trading, and so little on incremental reforms that could actually ease the credit crunch for SMEs” we might have to revise that theory. The lengthiest discussions would not seem to relate to issues that board members most know about, but on issues that collectively they least know about, and where no one has the guts to display ignorance.

The risk-weighted capital requirements for banks, of Basel II and Basel III discriminate directly against the access to bank credit, in risk adjusted competitive terms, of the SMEs. It is as easy as that. The regulators should dare to admit that and make amends for it… fast. The future of the western world, the Judeo-Christian civilization, much depends on it.