The US Banking System Is Sound?
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen keeps insisting that the banking system is “sound.” Is it though? Because it doesn’t look particularly sound.
In fact, we just witnessed the second-largest US bank failure ever.
Government regulators seized control of First Republic Bank over the weekend and sold the majority of the bank’s operations to JP Morgan Chase. It was the third major bank failure this year and the biggest bank to collapse since the 2008 financial crisis. It was the second-largest bank by assets to fail in US history.
First Republic went under after it revealed $100 billion in deposit losses in the first quarter.
The beleaguered bank has been struggling for a while. It was initially bailed out back in March with $30 billion in deposits from several large banks, including JP Morgan and Wells Fargo. The bank also borrowed heavily from the Federal Reserve’s bank bailout program. First Republic shares tumbled 75% last week before the FDIC stepped in.
While JP Morgan is taking over First Republic’s business, the FDIC will provide “shared-loss agreements.” As the FDIC website explains it, “the FDIC absorbs a portion of the loss on a specified pool of assets sold through the resolution of a failing bank – in effect sharing the loss with the purchaser of the failing bank.”
If we are to believe the mainstream narrative, the failures of Silicon Valley Bank, Signature Bank and First Republic Bank were isolated events and do not reflect a broader problem in the banking system. But as we have reported, these bank failures are just the tip of the iceberg. A report by the Wall Street Journal cites a study from Stanford and Columbia Universities that found 186 US banks are in distress.
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