Tier 1 capital is the core measure of a bank's financial strength from a regulator's point of view. It is composed of core capital,which consists primarily of common stock and disclosed reserves (or retained earnings), but may also include non-redeemable non-cumulative preferred stock. The Basel Committee also observed that banks have used innovative instruments over the years to generate Tier 1 capital; these are subject to stringent conditions and are limited to a maximum of 15% of total Tier 1 capital. This part of the Tier 1 capital will be phased out during the implementation of Basel III.
Capital in this sense is related to, but different from, the accounting concept of shareholders' equity. Both Tier 1 and Tier 2 capital were first defined in the Basel I capital accord and remained substantially the same in the replacement Basel II accord. Tier 2 capital represents "supplementary capital" such as undisclosed reserves, revaluation reserves, general loan-loss reserves, hybrid (debt/equity) capital instruments, and subordinated debt.
Each country's banking regulator, however, has some discretion over how differing financial instruments may count in a capital calculation, because the legal framework varies in different legal systems.
The theoretical reason for holding capital is that it should provide protection against unexpected losses. This is not the same as expected losses, which are covered by provisions, reserves and current year profits. In Basel I agreement, Tier 1 capital is a minimum of 4% ownership equity but investors generally require a ratio of 10%. Tier 1 capital should be greater than 150% of the minimum requirement.[ citation needed ]
The Tier 1 capital ratio is the ratio of a bank's core equity capital to its total risk-weighted assets (RWA). Risk-weighted assets are the total of all assets held by the bank weighted by credit risk according to a formula determined by the Regulator (usually the country's central bank). Most central banks follow the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) guidelines in setting formulae for asset risk weights. Assets like cash and currency usually have zero risk weight, while certain loans have a risk weight at 100% of their face value. The BCBS is a part of the Bank of International Settlements (BIS). Under BCBS guidelines total RWA is not limited to Credit Risk. It contains components for Market Risk (typically based on value at risk (VAR) ) and Operational Risk. The BCBS rules for calculation of the components of total RWA have seen a number of changes following the Financial crisis of 2007–08.
As an example, assume a bank with $2 of equity lends out $10 to a client. Assuming that the loan, now a $10 asset on the bank's balance sheet, carries a risk weighting of 90%, the bank now holds risk-weighted assets of $9 ($10 × 90%). Using the original equity of $2, the bank's Tier 1 ratio is calculated to be $2/$9 or 22%.
There are two conventions for calculating and quoting the Tier 1 capital ratio:
Preferred shares and non-controlling interests are included in the Tier 1 total capital ratio but not the Tier 1 common ratio.As a result, the common ratio will always be less than or equal to the total capital ratio. In the example above, the two ratios are the same.
Basel II is the second of the Basel Accords,, which are recommendations on banking laws and regulations issued by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision.
A capital requirement is the amount of capital a bank or other financial institution has to have as required by its financial regulator. This is usually expressed as a capital adequacy ratio of equity as a percentage of risk-weighted assets. These requirements are put into place to ensure that these institutions do not take on excess leverage and risk becoming insolvent. Capital requirements govern the ratio of equity to debt, recorded on the liabilities and equity side of a firm's balance sheet. They should not be confused with reserve requirements, which govern the assets side of a bank's balance sheet—in particular, the proportion of its assets it must hold in cash or highly-liquid assets. Capital is a source of funds not a use of funds.
The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) is a committee of banking supervisory authorities that was established by the central bank governors of the Group of Ten countries in 1974. The committee expanded its membership in 2009 and then again in 2014. In 2019, the BCBS has 45 members from 28 Jurisdictions, consisting of Central Banks and authorities with responsibility of banking regulation. It provides a forum for regular cooperation on banking supervisory matters. Its objective is to enhance understanding of key supervisory issues and improve the quality of banking supervision worldwide. The Committee frames guidelines and standards in different areas – some of the better known among them are the international standards on capital adequacy, the Core Principles for Effective Banking Supervision and the Concordat on cross-border banking supervision. The Committee's Secretariat is located at the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in Basel, Switzerland. The Bank for International Settlements (BIS) hosts and supports a number of international institutions engaged in standard setting and financial stability, one of which is BCBS. Yet like the other committees, BCBS has its own governance arrangements, reporting lines and agendas, guided by the central bank governors of the Group of Ten (G10) countries.
Tier 2 capital, or supplementary capital, includes a number of important and legitimate constituents of a bank's capital requirement. These forms of banking capital were largely standardized in the Basel I accord, issued by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and left untouched by the Basel II accord. National regulators of most countries around the world have implemented these standards in local legislation. In the calculation of regulatory capital, Tier 2 is limited to 100% of Tier 1 capital.
Basel I is the round of deliberations by central bankers from around the world, and in 1988, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision (BCBS) in Basel, Switzerland, published a set of minimum capital requirements for banks. This is also known as the 1988 Basel Accord, and was enforced by law in the Group of Ten (G-10) countries in 1992. A new set of rules known as Basel II was later developed with the intent to supersede the Basel I accords. However they were criticized by some for allowing banks to take on additional types of risk, which was considered part of the cause of the US subprime financial crisis that started in 2008. In fact, bank regulators in the United States took the position of requiring a bank to follow the set of rules giving the more conservative approach for the bank. Because of this it was anticipated that only the few very largest US banks would operate under the Basel II rules, the others being regulated under the Basel I framework. Basel III was developed in response to the financial crisis; it does not supersede either Basel I or II but focuses on different issues primarily related to the risk of a bank run.
Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) is also known as Capital to Risk (Weighted) Assets Ratio (CRAR), is the ratio of a bank's capital to its risk. National regulators track a bank's CAR to ensure that it can absorb a reasonable amount of loss and complies with statutory Capital requirements.
Advanced measurement approach (AMA) is one of three possible operational risk methods that can be used under Basel II by a bank or other financial institution. The other two are the Basic Indicator Approach and the Standardised Approach. The methods increase in sophistication and risk sensitivity with AMA being the most advanced of the three.
The term Advanced IRB or A-IRB is an abbreviation of advanced internal ratings-based approach, and it refers to a set of credit risk measurement techniques proposed under Basel II capital adequacy rules for banking institutions.
The term Foundation IRB or F-IRB is an abbreviation of foundation internal ratings-based approach, and it refers to a set of credit risk measurement techniques proposed under Basel II capital adequacy rules for banking institutions.
Probability of default (PD) is a financial term describing the likelihood of a default over a particular time horizon. It provides an estimate of the likelihood that a borrower will be unable to meet its debt obligations.
The term standardized approach refers to a set of credit risk measurement techniques proposed under Basel II capital adequacy rules for banking institutions.
In the context of operational risk, the standardized approach or standardised approach is a set of operational risk measurement techniques proposed under Basel II capital adequacy rules for banking institutions.
Exposure at default or (EAD) is a parameter used in the calculation of economic capital or regulatory capital under Basel II for a banking institution. It can be defined as the gross exposure under a facility upon default of an obligor.
Risk-weighted asset is a bank's assets or off-balance-sheet exposures, weighted according to risk. This sort of asset calculation is used in determining the capital requirement or Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) for a financial institution. In the Basel I accord published by the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, the Committee explains why using a risk-weight approach is the preferred methodology which banks should adopt for capital calculation:
Basel III is a global, voluntary regulatory framework on bank capital adequacy, stress testing, and market liquidity risk. This third installment of the Basel Accords was developed in response to the deficiencies in financial regulation revealed by the financial crisis of 2007–08. It is intended to strengthen bank capital requirements by increasing bank liquidity and decreasing bank leverage.
During the financial crisis of 2007–2008, several banks, including the UK's Northern Rock and the U.S. investment banks Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers, suffered a liquidity crisis, due to their over-reliance on short-term wholesale funding from the interbank lending market. As a result, the G20 launched an overhaul of banking regulation known as Basel III. In addition to changes in capital requirements, Basel III also contains two entirely new liquidity requirements: the net stable funding ratio (NSFR) and the liquidity coverage ratio (LCR). On October 31, 2014, the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision issued its final Net Stable Funding Ratio.
A systemically important financial institution (SIFI) or systemically important bank (SIB) is a bank, insurance company, or other financial institution whose failure might trigger a financial crisis. They are colloquially referred to as "too big to fail".
Under the Basel II guidelines, banks are allowed to use their own estimated risk parameters for the purpose of calculating regulatory capital. This is known as the internal ratings-based (IRB) approach to capital requirements for credit risk. Only banks meeting certain minimum conditions, disclosure requirements and approval from their national supervisor are allowed to use this approach in estimating capital for various exposures.
Basel IV concerns the changes agreed in 2016 and 2017 to the international banking standards known as the Basel Accords. Regulators argue that these changes are simply completing the Basel III reforms, agreed in principle in 2010–11, although most of the Basel III reforms were agreed in detail at that time. The Basel Committee (BCBS) itself calls them simply "finalised reforms" and the UK Government has called them "Basel 3.1". Critics of the reform, in particular those from the banking industry, argue that Basel IV require a significant increase in capital and should be treated as a distinct round of reforms.