Nine of the largest U.S. banks have submitted plans offering road maps for how the government could break up and sell off their assets if they are in danger of failing.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. has released summaries of the “living wills” for Bank of America, Barclays, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley and UBS.
The plans were required under the 2010 financial overhaul, which gave regulators the power to seize and dismantle banks that threaten the broader financial system.
The government is trying to prevent another situation in which taxpayers are asked to provide bailouts to banks, which is what happened during the 2008 financial crisis. At the time, regulators didn’t have rules in place to unwind banks considered “too big to fail.”
More than 100 other banks are required to submit living wills by the end of next year. And all banks are required to update their living wills annually or sooner, if there’s a material change in the company.
The lenders were asked to detail their assets and debts, how they’re tied to other companies, and spell out how they would be wound down in a fast and orderly bankruptcy process.
Most of the information had already been made public by the companies in regulatory filings. JPMorgan Chase, the largest U.S. bank by assets, talked about maintaining a “fortress balance sheet” and a sufficient global liquidity reserve to deal with problems that might arise. At the end of last year, it estimated that reserve to be about $379 billion.