Circular
Basle Committee Policy Paper on Loan Accounting, Credit Risk Disclosure & Other Matters
November 6, 1998
Circular No. 11109

Comments Invited by March 15, 1999

To All State Member Banks, Bank Holding Companies, and Branches and
Agencies of Foreign Banks, in the Second Federal Reserve District:

The following statement was issued by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System:

As part of its ongoing work to improve the transparency of banking organizations, the Basle Committee on Banking Supervision (Basle Committee) has issued a policy paper entitled "Sound Practices for Loan Accounting, Credit Risk Disclosure and Related Matters." Once finalized, the Basle Committee policy paper will represent the first comprehensive international supervisory guidance on sound practices for loan loss allowances, accounting for troubled loans, and related credit risk disclosures of banking organizations.

The policy paper presents guidance on sound practices through the discussion of 25 principles. The paper provides guidance on sound practices with respect to key loan accounting issues, such as the initial recognition and measurement of loans, subsequent measurement of impaired loans, the establishment of loan loss allowances, income recognition and issues relating to troubled debt restructurings. Moreover, the paper presents sound disclosure practices for loan portfolios, troubled loans, loan loss allowances and related credit risk management practices. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of the role of supervisors in assessing a bank's management of asset quality and the adequacy of loan loss allowances.

The paper has been issued by the Basle Committee as a proposal for public comment, with comments requested by March 15, 1999.