'Only a few strong, large universal banks will remain', Jain said Wednesday at a conference in Dubai. Since the global financial crisis, the leading global investment banks have reduced leverage by 40% and increased their so-called tier 1 capital by 160%, according to Jain.
Bloomberg reports that under regulator orders, banks are boosting their financial strength by increasing capital and liquidity, forcing them to cut costs by shrinking some operations and laying off staff. Under new capital rules known as Basel III, European lenders will be expected to hold more than triple the core capital as a buffer against insolvency than before the crisis.
'The number of banks still keen to play the role of being a global multi-location universal bank has shrunk', Jain said. 'The price of being global has gone up dramatically and the desire to be a global bank has dropped off'.
Consolidation is the 'unintended consequence' of new regulations, Jain said.
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