This is an article in 2014.
DEC 3, 2014 @ 10:37 AM
The wreckage of the financial crisis led to pages upon pages of financial reform aimed at ending the era of Too Big To Fail, but six years after the banking system blew up the five biggest firms control 44% of the $15.3 trillion in assets held by U.S. banks according to data compiled by SNL Financial. Those banks — JPMorgan Chase JPM -0.63%, Bank of America BAC -1.56%, Wells Fargo WFC -0.85%,Citigroup C -0.96% and US Bancorp USB -1.02% — collectively held $6.8 trillion in assets as of Sept. 30.
JPMorgan holds just over $2 trillion in assets, or 13.1% of the industry’s total, followed by BofA at $1.5 trillion (9.9%), Wells Fargo just under $1.5 trillion (9.7%) and Citi at $1.4 trillion (9%), before a substantial dropoff to US Bank at $387 billion (2.5%).
SNL’s analysis, which considered only commercial banks, notes the drastic increase in banking industry concentration over the past few decades. In 1990, the five biggest U.S. banks held less than 10% of industry assets, but that figure has steadily marched higher ever since, pausing only for the year from 1999 to 2000. Today, Wells Fargo, the third biggest bank, controls basically the same percentage of assets the entire top five did in 1990.
That increased concentration is largely thanks to banking industry consolidation that accelerated in the 1990s then hit overdrive after Sandy Weill’s controversial deal to create the modern Citigroup prompted the repeal of Glass-Steagall, the legislation that forced a separation of church and state between commercial and investment banks.
On a side note: According to the OECD, general government gross debt (federal, state, and local) in the United States in the third quarter of 2012 was$16.3 trillion, 108% of GDP. We are at $16.3 trillion in debt while the 5 big banks combined assets could wipe out most or all of the government gross debt. Real sad and yet too dangerous that Congress and government have given so much financial power to the 5 big banks…