US banks need access to greater levels of capital in order to make sure the country's financial system remains secure, a senior official has noted.
Ben Bernanke, chairman of the US Federal Reserve, believes financiers require higher buffers, as this will improve the state of their balance sheets while also reducing the risk of any repeat of the recent monetary crisis.
Speaking during a conference held at the Atlanta Federal Reserve, Mr Bernanke indicated that the incoming Basel III regulations are "essential", as they will help tighten up the international banking system.
The official - who took office in February 2006 - went on to say the US economy has not yet managed to fully recover from the impact of the global downturn.
"The heavy human and economic costs of the crisis underscore the importance of taking all necessary steps to avoid a repeat of the events of the past few years," he stated.
By Tony Aynsley