Foreign banks stockpile HQLA in US branches

The US branches of foreign banking organisations are sitting on heaps of high-quality liquid assets; some even have larger liquidity buffers than their affiliated intermediate holdings companies (IHCs).

Across a sample of some of the biggest FBOs, Barclays and Deutsche Bank both held 71% of their total HQLA in their branches as of end-2018 and Royal Bank of Canada 62%. 

The FBOs of MUFG and BNP Paribas had half of their respective HQLA, 52% and 48%, tucked away in their branches. BMO had 31%

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