Federal Reserve Board And OCC Publish White Paper On CRE Concentration Guidance

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On April 3, the Federal Reserve Board and the OCC jointly published a white paper on the regulators’ study of bank performance in the context of 2006 interagency guidance regarding commercial real estate lending that established supervisory criteria for banks that exceeded 100 percent of capital in construction lending and 300 percent of capital in total commercial real estate (CRE) lending. According to the paper, banks with high concentrations of construction and total commercial real estate lending that exceeded supervisory criteria failed at higher rates than banks with lower concentrations. Specifically key findings include: (i) 13 percent of banks that exceeded only the 100 percent construction criterion failed, (ii) among banks that exceeded both the construction and total CRE lending supervisory criteria, 23 percent failed during the three-year economic downturn from 2008 through 2011, compared with 0.5 percent of banks for which neither of the criteria was exceeded, (iii) construction lending was a key driver in many failures, and (iv) banks that were public stock companies and exceeded the supervisory criteria on CRE concentrations tended to experience greater deterioration in condition than banks below the criteria, and banks with CRE concentrations higher than the guidance criteria experienced larger declines in their market capital ratio during the recent economic downturn.


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