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Fed Review: Credit Quality Continues to Improve

August 25, 2011

A new review by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation indicated that the credit quality of large loan commitments owned by U.S. banking organizations, foreign banking organizations (FBOs), and nonbanks improved in 2011 for the second consecutive year.

The 2011 Shared National Credits (SNC) Review revealed that the total analyzed loans declined more than 28 percent to $321 billion in 2011, although the percentage of criticized assets remained high compared to pre-financial crisis levels. Loans rated as doubtful or loss — the two weakest categories—fell 50 percent to $24 billion in 2011.

The review cited operating performance among borrowers, debt restructurings, bankruptcy resolutions, and ongoing access to bond and equity markets as reasons for the improvement. Industries leading the improvement in credit quality were finance and insurance, real estate, construction, media and telecommunications.

Despite the improvements, the SNC noted that poorly underwritten loans originated in 2006 and 2007 continued to negatively affect the SNC portfolio, as nearly 60 percent of criticized assets were originated in these years. Refinancing risk remained elevated as nearly $2 trillion, or 78 percent of the SNC portfolio, matures by the end of 2014, according to the SNC. Of this maturing amount, $204 billion was criticized.

Despite nonbank entities owning the smallest share of loan commitments, they owned the largest share of classified credits at 58 percent.

To read the full Shared National Credits Program 2011 Review, click here.

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