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Guest blog: Basel 3.1 - On the cusp of a major milestone in global regulation

A new whitepaper from regulatory reporting fintech Suade highlights that, whether firms love it or hate it, Basel 3.1 marks a paradigm shift globally in the capital requirements for financial institutions.

By Lucie Truchet, Senior Policy Analyst, Suade

In an evolving financial landscape marked by the aftershocks of the 2007-09 Global Financial Crisis and more recently the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, Basel 3.1 emerges as a pivotal regulatory milestone. 

Known as Basel III Endgame in the US, Basel 3.1 in the UK and the Capital Requirements Regulation (CRR3) in the EU, this framework represents the culmination of the Basel III reforms, crafted to fortify the global banking system against future financial turbulences. 

Basel 3.1 introduces revolutionary changes in capital requirements for financial institutions. 

It mandates increased capital buffers against various risks - credit, market, and operational notably - calling for a significant elevation in aggregate capital requirements, aimed at improving the resilience of banking systems globally, reducing the likelihood of bank failures and their consequential economic impacts. 

This paradigm shift is not just about numbers – it is about changing the very approach to financial risk management.  

However, the implementation of Basel 3.1 exhibits considerable variability internationally. 

The EU's approach, for example, includes deviations such as transitional arrangements for small-and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), with full implementation expected by January 2025, while the UK aims for a July 2025 implementation (and it appears unlikely that the US will meet a mid-2025 start date). 

Moreover, the new framework has not been without its detractors. 

Critics argue that the increased capital requirements could lead to higher lending costs and reduced credit availability, potentially stifling economic activity. 

In the US, industry pushback on the “Basel Endgame” proposals has been unusually strident, and with presidential elections coming up and a possible change in the political landscape, the US approach remains highly uncertain both in terms of timing and content. 

This debate highlights the need for a balanced approach in financial regulation - one that ensures stability without hampering growth. 

We have recently published a whitepaper on Basel 3.1, available here, which offers an in-depth analysis of the latest regulatory changes affecting bank operations globally, with a particular focus on the US, EU, and UK. 

It explores the implications of these new rules and identifies the potential challenges that could arise during their implementation.

As part of the Whitepaper, we also interviewed a wide range of experts within the industry, including the BSA’s very own head of prudential regulation, Ruth Doubleday, to provide a critical analysis of Basel 3.1’s impact on the global financial landscape and offers practical guidance for finance professionals to effectively implement the rules.

To view Ruth’s interview in full, click here

Find out more: Read the Suade Whitepaper here

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