Rep. Marge Roukema is expected to request today that the deadline for banks to adjust to new loan-loss reserve guidelines be postponed.

At a hearing sponsored by House Banking's financial institutions subcommittee, Chairwoman Roukema will reportedly urge the Securities and Exchange Commission to push the deadline back one quarter. The current deadline is the fiscal quarter ending after May 20.

When the SEC announced the deadline late last month, a number of banks, accountants, and auditors said it did not provide enough time to digest the little-noticed guidelines, which were issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board in April.

Meanwhile, bank and securities regulators have been negotiating feverishly to resolve their differences before today's hearing. The agencies have fought bitterly over the question of whether or not banks are overreserving, but would like to present a united front to lawmakers.

As of Tuesday afternoon, however, no agreement had been reached, and participants from both camps expressed doubts about striking an accord in time.

One sticking point reportedly has been the SEC's unilateral approach to identifying and notifying banks that have possible loan-loss irregularities.

Since February, congressional staff members have urged the SEC, without success, to include bank regulators in the process. In particular, they want the SEC to seek comment and feedback from an institution's regulator and examiner before moving forward with its loan-loss review.

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