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COVID-19 as a Stress Test: Assessing the Bank Regulatory Framework
The widespread economic damage caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic poses the first major test of the bank regulatory reforms put in place following the global financial crisis. This study assesses this framework, with an emphasis on capital and liquidity requirements. Leading up to the COVID-19 crisis, banks were well-capitalized and held ample liquid assets, reflecting in part heightened requirements. Capital requirements were comparable across major jurisdictions, despite differences in the implementation of the international Basel standards. The overall robust capital and liquidity ...
Banks' Backtesting Exceptions during the COVID-19 Crash: Causes and Consequences
Banks' numerous and simultaneous backtesting exceptions in March 2020, during the COVID-19-related market crash, would have amplified their already-large spike in market risk capital requirements in the absence of regulatory intervention. This note provides background on how backtesting exceptions affect capital requirements generally, the source of those exceptions during the COVID-19 crash, and how regulators exercised discretion to mitigate the unintended capital increase.