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The FDIC, OCC and the Fed jointly proposed new rules on bank borrowing that could hamper lending. The rules were unveiled at an open FDIC board meeting on Tuesday. Under the new rules, the eight biggest bank holding companies would have to fund a minimum of 5 percent of their assets with Tier 1 capital. That's 2 percent more than the minimum required under the international banking regulation known as Basel III. If banks don't hit the minimum by January 1, 2018, they can't pay dividends, buy back shares or pay discretionary bonuses.
In addition, at the FDIC-insured operating bank, the company would have to have a leverage ratio of 6 percent to be considered "well-capitalized." If banks don't meet the 6 percent hurdle, they'll have to take "prompt corrective action" to raise their capital levels. Being well-capitalized makes it easier for banks to get their regulators' blessing of their capital plans.