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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ICBA Asks Federal Banking Regulators to Expedite Basel Proposed Rulemaking

Washington, D.C. (Jan. 29, 2008)—The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA) asked the federal banking agencies to quickly advance a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) that would allow community banks to adopt the Basel II Standardized Approach. ICBA made its request formally in a letter to the banking agencies.

"ICBA is concerned that if the Basel II Standardized NPR is not issued by the end of the first quarter of this year, community banks will not have sufficient time to adequately assess the impact of the proposal and provide informed comments," said Camden Fine, ICBA president and CEO. "As was the case with the Basel IA proposal, we anticipate that the Basel II Standardized NPR will be complex, requiring community banks to make detailed calculations of the potential effect that additional risk categories will have on their risk-based capital ratios and whether a proposed operational risk charge will offset some of the benefits of more risk-sensitive capital rules."

ICBA said that if the proposal is issued by March 31 with a 120-day public comment period, community banks should have sufficient time to understand the proposal and evaluate its impact.

Read ICBA's letter at www.icba.org.




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