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    APRA Licenses Two More Banks, Reduces Committed Liquidity Facility

    January 06, 2022

    The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) granted license to Barclays Bank PLC and Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank to operate as foreign authorized deposit-taking institutions under the Banking Act 1959. APRA also updated the list of authorized deposit-taking institutions. Additionally, APRA issued a letter to the authorized deposit-taking institutions announcing a reduction in the aggregate Committed Liquidity Facility from AUD 140 billion on September 10, 2021 to AUD 102 billion on January 01, 2022.

    This announcement on Committed Liquidity Facility follows the September 2021 communication, according to which APRA expects institutions subject to the Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR) requirements to reduce their reliance on the Committed Liquidity Facility to zero by the end of 2022, subject to financial market conditions. In the September announcement, APRA also advised that the Committed Liquidity Facility allocation of an authorized deposit-taking institution would decrease to zero through equal reductions on January 01, 2022; April 30, 2022; August 31, 2022; and December 31, 2022 and that an institution may choose to reduce this Facility early if it considers itself of have sufficient surplus funding and liquidity. APRA expects to provide a further update on the size of the aggregate Committed Liquidity Facility in May 2022, following the second scheduled reduction.

    The LCR is a minimum requirement that aims to ensure that authorized deposit-taking institutions maintain sufficient unencumbered high-quality liquid assets (HQLA) to survive a severe liquidity stress scenario lasting for 30 calendar days. The Committed Liquidity Facility, which was established with the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) in 2015, is intended to be sufficient in size to compensate for the lack of sufficient HQLA, which in Australia consists of notes and coins, Exchange Settlement Account balances held with the RBA, Australian Government Securities (AGS), and semi-government securities. APRA expects institutions to purchase the HQLA necessary to eliminate the need for the Committed Liquidity Facility. Specifically, no authorized deposit-taking institution should rely on the Committed Liquidity Facility to meet its minimum 100% LCR requirement from the beginning of 2022 (although institutions may continue to count any remaining Committed Liquidity Facility as part of their liquidity buffer). 

     

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    Keywords: Asia Pacific, Australia, Banking, Bank Licenses, Committed Liquidity Facility, LCR, Liquidity Risk, Barclays, Crédit Agricole, Banking Act, APRA

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