Some UK Banks Need More Capital

Andrew Bailey, Head of the UK Prudential Regulation Authority, told Parliament’s Treasury Select Committee that some banks need more capital. Reuters reports that some of Britian’s largest banks need more cpaital, but the government has not yet been asked to put cash into the Royal Bank of Scotland or Lloyds.

Bailey, who has been appointed a deputy governor of the Bank of England, and is also in charge of prudential regulation, will present a report on the capitalization of UK banks to the Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee (FPC) next week. In a statement to parliament’s Treasury Select Committee, Bailey said, “I agree there is a need to strengthen the capital position,” but he declined to go into more detail, adding that the restructuring of banks should be a precursor to raising more capital.

The Guardian reports that Andy Love, an MP on the Treasury committee, spoke of suggestions that the “order of magnitude” is estimated to be somewhere near £20bn and £50bn for the amount of capital banks needed. Love commented that there was talk of whether the government would need to intervene and add fresh capital into RBS or Lloyds, but Bailey commented, “I can assure you I have not asked the government to put money in at this point.”

The Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority will become Britain’s new banks and insurance supervisor, after April 1st, when the Financial Services Authority (FSA) is retired. Bailey, who was confirmed as the chief executive of the Bank of England’s Prudential Regulation Authority has been in talks with RBS about its restructuring in preparation for a possible full privatization of the government’s controlling stake in the bank. Meanwhile, The FSA has been reviewing the capital cushions of all the major banks, and the regulator is expected to provide an update on the health of the banking industry on March 27th, through the Bank of England’s financial policy committee (FPC).

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