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Canada Bank Regulator to Release Capital Rules Next Week

Canada’s banking regulator will release its final Basel III capital adequacy rules next week with some minor changes from guidelines released earlier this year, a spokeswoman said.

The final guidelines include “a few minor tweaks from the draft as a result of comments received during the consultation period and developments in other jurisdictions,” said Leonie Roux, communications officer at the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions.

Some nations are struggling to meet a Jan. 1, 2013, deadline for starting to apply the revised Basel rules, which were drawn up by global regulators to prevent a repeat of the financial crisis that followed the collapse of Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.

While declining to comment on the changes, Roux said that OSFI has told banks they should “plan to hold enough capital” to meet standards stipulated by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision by the beginning of 2013 even though countries have until 2019 to fully apply the Basel III rules.

“This is prudent given the current environment; Canadian banks are currently well positioned to meet or exceed this expectation,” Roux said.

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Canada’s fifth-largest bank, said today in a quarterly earnings report its estimated common equity Tier 1 ratio is 9 percent, compared with the 7 percent minimum requirement proposed by the Basel Committee and OSFI.

Toronto-Dominion Bank, the nation’s second-largest lender which also reported quarterly results today, said its estimated Tier 1 ratio is 8.2 percent, exceeding “the new 7 percent requirement on a fully-phased in basis.”

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