On June 12, Commissioner Kara M. Stein called on the Securities and Exchange Commission to make its net capital requirements for broker dealers more stringent. Commissioner Stein warned that current net capital levels may not be sufficient to withstand a financial crisis. In her remarks, Commissioner Stein said that “the SEC needs to examine its capital, leverage, and liquidity requirements, and modernize them to reflect the current funding ecosystem and our post-crisis understanding of systemic risks.” Commissioner Stein noted that the SEC should “revise its reasoning for imposing capital requirements to reflect not only our historical objective to protect a firm’s customers, but also reduce the risk to the entire financial system of a large broker-dealer’s collapse.” Commissioner Stein added that the SEC should consider what constitutes capital, specifically noting whether subordinated debt from an affiliate should continue to count as capital. Commissioner Stein also said that the SEC should “require some meaningful minimum haircuts for all types of securities lending and repos in our net capital regime.”
Click here to read Commissioner Stein’s June 12 speech to the Peterson Institute of International Economics.