Nout Wellink, Chair of Basel Committee on Banking Supervision
Wednesday 19 January 2011 - by Will Henley
Thanks in no small part to Nout Wellink, 2010 may well be remembered as the year that regulators finally got tough on reckless lending by financial institutions and, all being well, prevented a future crisis on the scale of 2007-8.
Many critics observe that the proposed capital ratios are still relatively low and fall short of higher standards demanded by analysts.
The Dutchman however stuck to the line that new requirements were necessary to ensure that the financial system is better prepared to prevent, or at least withstand, the effects of capital and liquidity shocks. Crucially, he was able to broker a compromise acceptable to both banks and tough talking regulators.
Though the final proposals were slimmed down from a harsher earlier version in order to incorporate a looser definition of top-quality tier-one capital, they hold out the prize of a level playing field that financial institutions have been demanding for years.
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