Over two years, top US banks’ capital fell 5%

Aggregate Common Equity Tier 1 (CET1) capital held by the eight systemic US banks dropped $42.6 billion (-5%) between Q3 2017 and end-2019. It could fall a further $40 billion (-5%) on implementation of the new stress capital buffer (SCB), says Federal Reserve governor, Lael Brainard.

CET1 increased 9% between Q2 2014 and Q3 2017, and has been on an uneven downward trend since. Higher payouts to shareholders, through dividends and stock buybacks, are one reason the banks’ capital piles have

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