Robust Capital Regulation

22 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2011 Last revised: 6 Jul 2011

See all articles by Viral V. Acharya

Viral V. Acharya

New York University - Leonard N. Stern School of Business; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); New York University (NYU) - Department of Finance

Hamid Mehran

Independent

Til Schuermann

Oliver Wyman

Anjan V. Thakor

Washington University, Saint Louis - John M. Olin School of Business; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: June 2011

Abstract

Banks’ leverage choices represent a delicate balancing act. Credit discipline argues for more leverage, while balance-sheet opacity and ease of asset substitution argue for less. Meanwhile, regulatory safety nets promote ex post financial stability, but also create perverse incentives for banks to engage in correlated asset choices and to hold little equity capital. As a way to cope with these distorted incentives, we outline a two-tier capital framework for banks. The first tier is a regular core capital requirement that helps deter excessive risk-taking incentives. The second tier, a novel aspect of our framework, is a special capital account that limits risk taking but preserves creditors’ monitoring incentives.

Keywords: capital requirements, leverage, systemic risk

JEL Classification: G12, G21

Suggested Citation

Acharya, Viral V. and Mehran, Hamid and Schuermann, Til and Thakor, Anjan V., Robust Capital Regulation (June 2011). FRB of New York Staff Report No. 490. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1822333 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1822333

Viral V. Acharya

New York University - Leonard N. Stern School of Business ( email )

44 West 4th Street
Suite 9-160
New York, NY NY 10012
United States

HOME PAGE: http://pages.stern.nyu.edu/~sternfin/vacharya/public_html/~vacharya.htm

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

New York University (NYU) - Department of Finance

Stern School of Business
44 West 4th Street
New York, NY 10012-1126
United States

Hamid Mehran (Contact Author)

Independent ( email )

No Address Available

Til Schuermann

Oliver Wyman ( email )

1166 6th Avenue
New York City, NY
United States

Anjan V. Thakor

Washington University, Saint Louis - John M. Olin School of Business ( email )

One Brookings Drive
Campus Box 1133
St. Louis, MO 63130-4899
United States

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o ECARES ULB CP 114
B-1050 Brussels
Belgium

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