Ranked: The U.S. Banks With the Most Uninsured Deposits
The U.S. Top Banks by Uninsured Deposits
Today, there is at least $7 trillion in uninsured bank deposits in America.
This dollar value is roughly three times that of Apple’s market capitalization, or about equal to 30% of U.S. GDP. Uninsured deposits are ones that exceed the $250,000 limit insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), which was actually increased from $100,000 after the Global Financial Crisis. They account for roughly 40% of all bank deposits.
In the wake of the Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) fallout, we look at the 30 U.S. banks with the highest percentage of uninsured deposits, using data from S&P Global.
Which Banks Have the Most Uninsured Deposits?
Over the last month, SVB and Signature Bank went under at lightning speed.
Below, we show how their level of uninsured deposits compare to other banks. The dataset includes U.S. banks with at least $50 billion in assets at the end of 2022.
|Top 30 Rank||Bank||Uninsured|
|Total Assets (B)|
|1||Silicon Valley Bank*||93.8||$209|
|2||Bank of New York Mellon||92.0||$325|
|3||State Street Bank and Trust Co.||91.2||$298|
|5||Northern Trust Co.||81.6||$155|
|7||CIBC Bank USA||73.1||$51|
|8||HSBC Bank USA NA||70.6||$162|
|9||City National Bank||70.3||$97|
|10||First Republic Bank||67.4||$213|
|11||East West Bank||65.8||$64|
|12||BMO Harris Bank NA||60.5||$177|
|14||Western Alliance Bank||56.3||$68|
|16||Banco Popular de Puerto Rico||53.1||$56|
|17||MUFG Union Bank NA**||53.0||$104|
|18||Zions Bancorp. NA||52.2||$90|
|19||JPMorgan Chase Bank NA||52.0||$3,202|
|20||U.S. Bank NA||51.4||$585|
|22||Bank of the West**||50.7||$92|
|24||Fifth Third Bank NA||48.4||$206|
|25||Goldman Sachs Bank USA||47.6||$487|
|26||Citizens Bank NA||47.5||$226|
|27||Manufacturers and Traders Trust Co.||47.1||$200|
|28||First Horizon Bank||46.2||$79|
|29||Bank of America NA||46.1||$2,419|
|30||Huntington National Bank||45.6||$182|
*Failed banks. **Acquired banks.
Bank of New York (BNY) Mellon and State Street Bank are the active banks with the highest levels of uninsured deposits. They are the two largest custodian banks in the U.S., followed by JP Morgan. Custodian banks provide critical infrastructure in the financial system, holding assets for safe-keeping for investment managers and transferring assets, among other duties.
Both BNY Mellon and State Street are considered “systemically important” banks.
Where these banks differ from SVB is that their loans and held-to-maturity securities as a percentage of total deposits are much lower. While these loans made up over 94% of SVB’s deposits, they made up 31% of BNY Mellon’s and 40% of State Street Bank’s deposits, respectively.
Held-to-maturity securities pose a greater risk to banks. Many of these holdings have lost value since interest rates have risen at a sharp clip. This presents interest-rate risks to banks. Consider how the value of long-term U.S. Treasurys declined about 30% in 2022. In this way, if a bank sells these assets before they mature, they take on a steep loss.
Overall, 11 banks on this list have loans and held-to-maturity assets that are over 90% of their total value of deposits.
To prevent wider ramifications, regulators implemented emergency actions. This was done by protecting all deposits of SVB and Signature Bank days after they announced failure.
The Fed also set up an emergency lending facility for banks. This Bank Term Funding Program (BTFP) was created to provide additional funding for banks if depositors pulled their money. It was also set up to prevent banks from interest-rate risk.
So far, more than $50 billion in loans have been withdrawn from the BTFP, up from $11.9 billion in its first week. (The Federal Reserve updates these numbers on a weekly basis.) This has led the Fed’s balance sheet to once again tick higher after slowly declining with the introduction of quantitative tightening in 2022.
Between a Rock and a Hard Place
What does this mean for the U.S. banking system, and what are the implications for depositors and the broader financial system?
On the one hand, the Fed may have had no other option than to save the banks.
“The way the world is, the government had no alternative but to back all deposits. Or we would have had the biggest goddamn bunch of bank runs you ever saw.”
The bigger problem is that it introduces new risk into the system. If market participants expect the Fed to always come to the rescue, they will likely make less prudent decisions. Beyond this, the ultra-low interest rate environment not only made banks more sensitive to interest-rate risk as rates went up, but it also lowered the cost of risk-taking.
Now, the Fed has said that they could take necessary actions to protect uninsured deposits. How quickly BTFP loans increase in the next few months will be anyone’s guess as clients from smaller banks withdraw funds and send to larger ones or invest in money market funds.
Editor’s note: Not all types of uninsured deposits are created equal. For custodian banks, retail deposits can make up a smaller portion of total deposits while operational deposits comprise a larger share. These types of deposits hold large amounts of funds for other banks for the purposes of custody or clearing and cash management, among other functions. For this reason, they are often considered more stable forms of deposits.
Visualized: Real Interest Rates by Country
Currently, over half of the major economies have negative real interest rates.
Visualized: Real Interest Rates of Major World Economies
Interest rates play a crucial role in the economy because they affect consumers, businesses, and investors alike.
They can have significant implications for people’s ability to access credit, manage debts, and buy more expensive goods such as cars and houses.
This graphic uses data from Infinity Asset Management to visualize the real interest rates (ex ante) of 40 major world economies, by subtracting projected inflation over the next 12 months from current nominal rates.
Nominal Interest Rates vs. Real Interest Rates
Nominal interest rates refer to the rate at which money can be borrowed or lent at face value, without considering any other factors like inflation.
Meanwhile, the real interest rate is the nominal interest rate after taking into account inflation, reflecting the true cost of borrowing or lending. Real interest rates can fluctuate over time and are influenced by various factors such as inflation, central bank policies, and economic growth. They can also influence economic growth by affecting investment and consumption decisions.
According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), since the mid-1980s, real interest rates across several advanced economies have declined steadily.
As of March 2023, Brazil has the highest real interest rate among the 40 major economies shown in this dataset.
Below we look at Brazil’s situation, along with the data of the four other major economies with the highest real rates in the dataset:
|Nominal Interest Rate||Real Interest Rate|
In general, countries with high interest rates offer investors higher yields on their investments but also come with higher risks due to volatile economies and political instability.
Below are the five countries in the dataset with the lowest real rates:
|Nominal Interest Rate||Real Interest Rate|
|🇨🇿 Czech Republic||7.00%||-7.17%|
Hyperinflation, as seen in Argentina, can lead to anomalies in both real and nominal rates, causing problems for the country’s broader economy and financial system.
As you can see above, with a 78% nominal interest rate, Argentina’s real interest rates remain the lowest on the planet due to a staggering annual inflation rate of over 100%.
Interest Rate Outlook
Increasing inflation and tighter monetary policy have resulted in rapid increases in nominal interest rates recently in many countries.
However, IMF analysis suggests that recent increases could be temporary.
Central banks in advanced economies are likely to ease monetary policy and bring interest rates back to pre-pandemic levels when inflation is brought under control, according to the fund.
Visualizing the Assets and Liabilities of U.S. Banks
Banks play a crucial role in the U.S. economy, and understanding their balance sheets can offer insight into why they sometimes fail.
Understanding the Assets and Liabilities of U.S. Banks
The U.S. banking sector has more than 4,000 FDIC-insured banks that play a crucial role in the country’s economy by securely storing deposits and providing credit in the form of loans.
This infographic visualizes all of the deposits, loans, and other assets and liabilities that make up the collective balance sheet of U.S banks using data from the Federal Reserve.
With the spotlight on the banking sector after the collapses of Signature Bank, Silicon Valley Bank, and First Republic bank, understanding the assets and liabilities that make up banks’ balance sheets can give insight in how they operate and why they sometimes fail.
Assets: The Building Blocks of Banks’ Business
Assets are the foundation of a bank’s operations, serving as a base to provide loans and credit while also generating income.
A healthy asset portfolio with a mix of loans along with long-dated and short-dated securities is essential for a bank’s financial stability, especially since assets not marked to market may have a lower value than expected if liquidated early.
As of Q4 2022, U.S. banks generated an average interest income of 4.54% on all assets.
Loans and Leases
Loans and leases are the primary income-generating assets for banks, making up 53% of the assets held by U.S. banks.
- Real estate loans for residential and commercial properties (45% of all loans and leases)
- Commercial and industrial loans for business operations (23% of all loans and leases)
- Consumer loans for personal needs like credit cards and auto loans (15% of all loans and leases)
- Various other kinds of credit (17% of all loans and leases)
Securities make up the next largest portion of U.S. banks’ assets (23%) at $5.2 trillion. Banks primarily invest in Treasury and agency securities, which are debt instruments issued by the U.S. government and its agencies.
These securities can be categorized into three types:
- Held-to-maturity (HTM) securities, which are held until they mature and provide a stable income stream
- Available-for-sale (AFS) securities, which can be sold before maturity
- Trading securities, held for short-term trading to profit from price fluctuations
Along with Treasury and agency securities which make up the significant majority (80%) of U.S. banks’ securities, banks also invest in other securities which are non-government-issued debt instruments like corporate bonds, mortgage-backed securities, and asset-backed securities.
Cash assets are a small but essential part of U.S. banks’ balance sheets, making up $3.1 trillion or 13% of all assets. Having enough cash assets ensures adequate liquidity needed to meet short-term obligations and regulatory requirements.
Cash assets include physical currency held in bank vaults, pending collections, and cash balances in accounts with other banks.
Liabilities: Banks’ Financial Obligations
Liabilities represent the obligations banks must fulfill, including customer deposits and borrowings. Careful management of liabilities is essential to maintain liquidity, manage risk, and ensure a bank’s overall solvency.
Deposits make up the largest portion of banks’ liabilities as they represent the money that customers entrust to these institutions. It’s important to note that the FDIC insures deposit accounts up to $250,000 per depositor, per insured bank, for each type of account (like single accounts, joint accounts, and retirement accounts).
There are two primary types of deposits, large time deposits and other deposits. Large time deposits are defined by the FDIC as time deposits exceeding $100,000, while other deposits include checking accounts, savings accounts, and smaller time deposits.
U.S. banks had $17.18 trillion in overall deposits as of April 12th 2023, with other deposits accounting for 74% of the overall liabilities while large time deposits made up 9%.
After deposits, borrowings are the next largest liability on the balance sheet of U.S. banks, making up nearly 12% of all liabilities at $2.4 trillion.
These include short-term borrowings from other banks or financial institutions such as Federal Funds and repurchase agreements, along with long-term borrowings like subordinated debt which ranks below other loans and securities in the event of a default.
How Deposits, Rates, and Balance Sheets Affect Bank Failures
Just like any other business, banks have to balance their finances to remain solvent; however, successful banking also relies heavily on the trust of depositors.
While in other businesses an erosion of trust with customers might lead to breakdowns in future business deals and revenues, only in banking can a dissolution in customer trust swiftly turn into the immediate removal of deposits that backstop all revenue-generating opportunities.
Although recent bank collapses aren’t solely due to depositors withdrawing funds, bank runs have played a significant role. Most recently, in First Republic’s case, depositors pulled out more than $101 billion in Q1 of 2023, which would’ve been more than 50% of their total deposits, had some of America’s largest banks not injected $30 billion in deposits on March 16th.
It’s important to remember that the rapidly spreading fires of bank runs are initially sparked by poor asset management, which can sometimes be detected on banks’ balance sheets.
A combination of excessive investment in long-dated held-to-maturity securities, one of the fastest rate hiking cycles in recent history, and many depositors fearing for and moving their uninsured deposits of over $250,000 has resulted in the worst year ever for bank failures in terms of total assets.
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