U.S. bank regulators are signaling that they've nearly settled on a leverage ratio for banks. The final number is vitally important, writes Mayra Rodríguez Valladares, managing principal at MRV Associates, a New York-based capital markets and financial regulatory consulting and training firm. But so is the question of whether banks will be allowed to use their own models to derive risk inputs, a non-transparent process that permits "tremendous variability in the risk-weighted assets of United States, European and Asian banks even when banks have similar portfolios," she writes.

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