Fitch projects US$566 bil. risk requirement level


WASHINGTON — Fitch Ratings said Thursday that the world’s 29 biggest banks together may have to raise US$566 billion by the end of 2018 to meet new international requirements for holding cushions against risk.

In the report, Fitch says that having to raise that much capital could crimp the banks’ ability to increase dividends or buy back their own shares. The so-called Basel III rules for banks to increase capital reserves are designed to prevent another global financial crisis.

The 29 banks, in 12 countries, were designated “global systemically important financial institutions” in November by the Financial Stability Board, an international regulators’ group. That means they’re deemed so big and connected to other firms that a failure of one could bring down the financial system. They have a total US$47 trillion in assets, according to Fitch.

The U.S. banks are Bank of America Corp., Bank of New York Mellon Corp., Citigroup Inc., Goldman Sachs Group Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley, State Street Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co.