Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner: Global bank reform still needed

Sunday, February 7, 2010; A08

Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner said Saturday that the recovery in the global economy has not caused major economies to ease up on their commitment to stiffen the rules for banks.

"We all share a deep commitment to try to move forward and reach agreement on a strong, comprehensive set of financial reforms on the timetable we all committed to last September," he said at a news conference after a meeting of Group of Seven finance chiefs in Iqaluit, Canada.

"That means agreement on . . . a new set of capital requirements for large global institutions by the end of this year," he added, playing down the possibility that the United States might be headed in a different direction from the G-7.

President Obama has proposed additional rules that would limit proprietary trading by banks, put them out of the hedge fund and private equity business and limit their future growth through a new market share cap.

Some G-7 members have expressed reservations about the U.S. proposals, but Geithner deflected any suggestion this was a hindrance for reform.

"We all have somewhat different systems and these common standards we put in place are going to have to be complemented by slightly different approaches at the national level," he said. "But what you saw today was . . . a strong commitment together . . . to put reforms in place."

-- Reuters

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