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EU, US agree to fast-track bank rules, says Barnier

Feb 15 2013 Huw Jones, Reuters

The European Union and the United States agreed on Thursday to implement the new global Basel III capital adequacy rules for banks as soon as possible, EU financial services chief Michel Barnier said after a meeting in Washington. The Basel rules are the world's main regulatory response to the 2007-09 financial crisis, aimed at preventing a repeat crisis where banks had to be bailed out by their governments. But both the United States and the EU missed the January deadline for the start of a six-year phase-in of the new regime - the EU was not ready, and the United States in December announced a delay for further consultation. Barnier said on Thursday he and Federal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo "agreed it was essential that effective implementation of the new regulatory framework should be done as soon as possible". The EU is expected to formally implement Basel next January, a year late, but despite the delay the biggest EU and U.S. banks already meet or exceed the new capital

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