More Institutions Report Declining Earnings, Quarterly Losses: Troubled assets continued to mount at insured commercial banks and savings institutions in the third quarter of 2008, placing a growing burden on industry earnings. Expenses for credit losses topped $50 billion for a second consecutive quarter, absorbing one-third of the industry’s net operating revenue (net interest income plus total noninterest income). Third quarter net income totaled $1.7 billion, a decline of $27.0 billion (94.0 percent) from the third quarter of 2007. The industry’s quarterly return on assets (ROA) fell to 0.05 percent, compared to 0.92 percent a year earlier. This is the second-lowest quarterly ROA reported by the industry in the past 18 years. Evidence of a deteriorating operating environment was widespread. A majority of institutions (58.4 percent) reported year-over-year declines in quarterly net income, and an even larger proportion (64.0 percent) had lower quarterly ROAs. The erosion in profitability has thus far been greater for larger institutions. The median ROA at institutions with assets greater than $1 billion has fallen from 1.03 percent to 0.56 percent since the third quarter of 2007, while at community banks (institutions with assets less than $1 billion) the median ROA has declined from 0.97 percent to 0.72 percent. Almost one in every four institutions (24.1 percent) reported a net loss for the quarter, the highest percentage in any quarter since the fourth quarter of 1990, and the highest percentage in a third quarter in the 24 years that all insured institutions have reported quarterly earnings.
Lower Asset Values Add to the Downward Pressure on Earnings: Loan-loss provisions totaled $50.5 billion in the quarter, more than three times the $16.8 billion of a year earlier. Total noninterest income was $905 million (1.5 percent) lower than in the third quarter of 2007. Securitization income declined by $1.9 billion (33.0 percent), as reduced demand in secondary markets limited new securitization activity. Gains on sales of assets other than loans declined by $1.0 billion (78.7 percent) year-over-year, and losses on sales of real estate acquired through foreclosure rose by $518 million (588 percent). Among the few categories of noninterest income that showed improvement, loan sales produced net gains of $166 million in the third quarter, compared to $1.2 billion in net losses a year earlier, and trading revenue was up by $2.8 billion (129.2 percent). Sales of securities and other assets yielded net losses of $7.6 billion in the third quarter, compared to gains of $77 million in the third quarter of 2007. Expenses for impairment of goodwill and other intangible asset expenses were $1.8 billion (58.6 percent) higher than a year ago.
Loan Losses Continue to Mount: The industry reported year-over-year growth in net charge-offs for the seventh consecutive quarter. Net charge-offs totaled $27.9 billion in the quarter, an increase of $17.0 billion (156.4 percent) from a year earlier. Two-thirds of the increase in charge-offs consisted of loans secured by real estate. Charge-offs of closed-end first and second lien mortgage loans were $4.6 billion (423 percent) higher than in the third quarter of 2007, while charged-off real estate construction and development (C&D) loans were up by $3.9 billion (744 percent). Charge-offs of home equity lines of credit were $2.1 billion (306 percent) higher. Charge-offs of loans to commercial and industrial (C&I) borrowers increased by $2.3 billion (139 percent), credit card loan charge-offs rose by $1.5 billion (37.4 percent), and charge-offs of other loans to individuals were $1.7 billion (76.4 percent) higher. The quarterly net charge-off rate in the third quarter was 1.42 percent, up from 1.32 percent in the second quarter and 0.57 percent in the third quarter of 2007. This is the highest quarterly net charge-off rate for the industry since 1991. The failure of Washington Mutual on September 25 meant that a significant amount of charge-off activity was not reflected in the reported industry totals for the quarter1.
Growth in Reported Noncurrent Loans Remains High: The amount of loans and leases that were noncurrent (90 days or more past due or in nonaccrual status) increased to $184.3 billion at the end of September. This is $21.4 billion (13.1 percent) more than insured institutions reported as of June 30 and is up by $101.2 billion (122 percent) over the past 12 months. The percentage of total loans and leases that were noncurrent rose from 2.04 percent to 2.31 percent during the quarter and is now at the highest level since the third quarter of 1993. The growth in noncurrent loans during the quarter was led by closed-end first and second lien mortgage loans, where noncurrents rose by $9.6 billion (14.3 percent). Noncurrent real estate C&D loans increased by $6.9 billion (18.1 percent), while noncurrent loans secured by nonfarm nonresidential properties rose by $2.2 billion (18.1 percent). Noncurrent C&I loans were up by $1.8 billion (13.7 percent) during the quarter.
Nine Failures in Third Quarter Include Washington Mutual Bank: The number of insured commercial banks and savings institutions fell to 8,384 in the third quarter, down from 8,451 at midyear. During the quarter, 73 institutions were absorbed in mergers, and 9 institutions failed. This is the largest number of failures in a quarter since the third quarter of 1993, when 16 insured institutions failed. Among the failures was Washington Mutual Bank, an insured savings institution with $307 billion in assets and the largest insured institution to fail in the FDIC’s 75-year history. There were 21 new institutions chartered in the third quarter, the smallest number of new charters in a quarter since 17 new charters were added in the first quarter of 2002. Four insured savings institutions, with combined assets of $1.0 billion, converted from mutual ownership to stock ownership in the third quarter. The number of insured institutions on the FDIC’s “Problem List” increased from 117 to 171, and the assets of “problem” institutions rose from $78.3 billion to $115.6 billion during the quarter. This is the first time since the middle of 1994 that assets of “problem” institutions have exceeded $100 billion.
Failure-Related Restructuring Contributes to a Decline in Reported Capital: Total equity capital fell by $44.2 billion (3.3 percent) during the third quarter. A $14.6-billion decline in other comprehensive income, driven primarily by unrealized losses on securities held for sale, was a significant factor in the reduction in equity, but most of the decline stemmed from the accounting effect of the failure of Washington Mutual Bank (WaMu)2. The WaMu failure had a similar effect on the reported industry totals for tier 1 capital and total risk-based capital, which declined by $33.6 billion and $35.3 billion, respectively. Unlike equity capital, these regulatory capital amounts are not affected by changes in unrealized gains or losses on available-for-sale securities. Almost half of all institutions (48.5 percent) reported declines in their leverage capital ratios during the quarter, and slightly more than half (51.2 percent) reported declines in their total risk-based capital ratios. Many institutions reduced their dividends to preserve capital; of the 3,761 institutions that paid dividends in the third quarter of 2007, more than half (57.4 percent) paid lower dividends in the third quarter of 2008, including 20.7 percent that paid no dividends. Third quarter dividends totaled $11.0 billion, a $16.9-billion (60.7-percent) decline from a year ago.
Source FDIC: http://www2.fdic.gov/qbp/index.asp
For more on what the graphs are telling you, read What are CAMELS ratings? Is My Bank Okay?
Graphs From Q2-2008: Graphs – Not Laughs – From the FDIC Report