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Risk‐based capital requirements and their impact upon the banking industry: Basel II and CAD III

Rosa Maria Lastra (Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary, University of London, 13 Charterhouse Square, London EC1M 6EY, UK; tel: +44 (0)20 7775 3319; e‐mail:

Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance

ISSN: 1358-1988

Article publication date: 1 September 2004



The Basel Committee has proposed a new capital framework to respond to the deficiencies of the 1988 Capital Accord (Basel I). The 1988 Accord has been criticised for its crude assessment of risk and for creating opportunities for regulatory arbitrage. In principle, the new approach, often referred to as Basel II, is not intended to raise or lower the overall level of regulatory capital currently held by banks, but to make it more risk sensitive. The spirit of the new Accord is to encourage the use of internal systems for measuring risks and allocating capital (the Accord extends the use of internal models from market risk to credit risk). A number of issues have been raised, however, with regard to its complexity, its cost, its impact on procyclicality, the possibility that it can lead to competitive distortions if some countries do not apply it (some big emerging economies) or apply it differently to small and big institutions (the USA) and others. Banks in Europe will also be obliged to comply with the new Capital Directive, often referred to as CAD III, which is the means by which the EU will implement the new Basel Capital Accord. CAD III will apply to all credit institutions and investment firms and not only to internationally active banks, as Basel does. This paper presents a critical approach to these developments and examines their impact upon the banking industry.



Lastra, R.M. (2004), "Risk‐based capital requirements and their impact upon the banking industry: Basel II and CAD III", Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, Vol. 12 No. 3, pp. 225-239.



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Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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