Basel clarifies disclosure rules on bank capital

BANKS across the world will have to use a common format for disclosing the size and quality of their capital safety buffers from 2013 to help reassure investors they are stable.

The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, made up of regulators from nearly 30 countries, including the US, China, Japan and large EU countries, published draft disclosure templates yesterday for consultation.

“It is often suggested that lack of clarity on the quality of capital contributed to uncertainty during the financial crisis,” the Swiss-based Basel Committee said in a statement.

The requirement to fully disclose details of capital buffers was enshrined in the Basel III accord, which will force banks to hold more capital and liquidity from 2013.

Banks will have to comply with disclosure rules from the date of publication of their first set of financial statements on or after 1 January 2013.