The world's largest banks are into the homestretch of a longcampaign to convince politicians and regulators that plannedchanges to their capital requirements will suffocate the industryand imperil lending and growth. All that lobbying is paying offwhen it counts.

The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision will hold threecrucial meetings in the next two weeks as it races to wrap up thepost-crisis capital framework by the end of the year. The bankswarn that proposed changes in how they assess risk would sendcapital requirements spiraling, and key policy makers from Europeto Japan are heeding their message.

The banks' lobbying success was on display this week. AndreasDombret said the Bundesbank, where he's in charge of financialsupervision, had considered the industry's arguments and concludedthat “there is a need to recalibrate” the Basel proposals. TheEuropean Union's top two officials then insisted in a positionpaper before the Group of 20 summit Sept. 4-5 that the BaselCommittee stick to its promise not to increase capital requirementssignificantly as it refines risk measurement.

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