Updated for 2nd Quarter 2019 ranks
From 1990 to 2018, there were 1,419 failures of banks. Of these, 90% (1,271 banks) were ranked less than 125 by IDCFP up to 17 months before failure. Further, 73% (1,033 banks) were rated less than 125 by IDCFP up to 29 months before a collapse. Even the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions has listed on their website “IDC has a remarkable track record of identifying deteriorating or improving performance months, and sometimes years, before it becomes apparent to other ranking companies.”
IDC Financial Publishing’s (IDCFP) CAMEL savings institution, credit union and bank safety ratings range from 300 (the top grade attainable) to 1 (the lowest). From the early 1990’s, through today, institutions using CAMEL ranks determined that ranks less than 125 were deemed below investment grade. This article discusses banks which issued brokered CDs, and how our ranking of these banks predicted institution failure, the banking crisis of 2008 to 2009, and post-crisis institution mergers. We also provide an outlook for the future.
In Chart I above, the red line plots the numbers of banks with an IDCFP rank less than 125. The number of these high-risk banks reached peak levels in the early 90’s (A), following the banking crisis in the late 80’s. The number of high-risk banks issuing brokered CDs then declined and stabilized at low levels until 2006.
IDCFP’s Ranks Forecast the Banking Crisis of 2008 - 2009
In early 2006, the number of banks with an IDCFP rank below 125 began to accelerate (B). At the end of that same year, banks with a rank of 125 or higher, peaked at 1,800 (C) and began a decline. Together, the change in the numbers of these banks forecast the crisis of 2008-2009. The peak and decline of the red line illustrate the end of the banking crisis, and the beginning of the resolution of high-risk banks.
The second quarter of 2009 produced the largest number of institutions with a safety rank below 125, reaching peak level (D). The total number of banks with brokered deposits, time deposits and CUSIP numbers for outstanding CDs numbered 2,257. Out of this total, 1,177 (52%) banks were ranked 125 or higher, and 1,080 (48%) were ranked less than 125.
Out of the 1,080 high-risk banks, 274 (25%) failed, 563 (52%) merged, 14 (1%) currently remain below investment grade, and 229 (21%) recovered, attaining a rank of 125 or above due to reduced delinquencies or improved capital ratios as of the 2nd quarter of 2019 (see Table I).
Table II below shows the number of bank failures continued to accelerate until June 2010, following the peak of institutions ranked less than 125 in 2009 by IDCFP.
Select Bank Mergers Improve Financials
From June 2009 to June 2019, a total of 563 institutions merged that we ranked below 125 in June 2009. Of these, 399 institutions merged into surviving institutions ranked 125 or higher. These low institution ranks were published prior to the merger and were a measure of high risk. As a result, the 399 merged institutions not only survived, but also benefited since our rank of those banks, with CDs in existence or to be issued, rose from below investment grade to above.
The Importance of IDCFP’s Ranks to Monitor Institutions Post-Banking Crisis
The demand for our financial institution ranks measuring the safety and soundness of banks continued strong from 2008 and post-crisis, as banks continued to fail and merge with higher rated surviving institutions.
- As of June 30, 2009, banks and savings institutions ranked less than 125 by IDCFP totaled 1080, or 48% of all ranked institutions (see Table I).
- Of the 1080 institutions, only 229, or 21% of institutions ranked below 125, survived failure by improving income statements and balance sheets.
- Of the 1080 institutions, 563 merged from June 2009 to June 2019, and 399 of the 563 were ranked less than 125, or below investment grade, prior to the merger, thereby improving their rank by merging.
- Despite the peak in the number of high-risk banks in June 2009, failure of banks and savings institutions continued to accelerate into June 2010 and remained high through June 2013 (see Table II).
- Since the peak in the Banking Crisis of 2008-2010, the number of banks ranked less than 125 has declined significantly, from June 2009 to June 2019 (E, Chart I), primarily due to bank failures and mergers into higher-ranked banks.
Crisis then Recovery
The total number of banks and savings institutions issuing brokered CDs ranked over 125 in the 2nd quarter of 2009 was 1,177 and has grown to 1,539 as of June 30th, 2019. Not only did the number of investment grade institutions grow by 362 in over 8 years, but, in addition, 837 institutions below investment grade in June 2009 (274 failures and 563 mergers) were replaced by new banks.
The increase in the number of institutions ranked below 125 clearly predicted the banking crisis of 2008, as early as 2006 when those numbers began to rise. The peak and subsequent decline in lower-ranked institutions also forecast the end of the banking crisis in 2009. Additionally, the increase in new banks issuing brokered CDs, the replacement of 837 institutions, plus the sharp decline in number of high-risk banks, all illustrated the recovery period from 2010 to mid-2019 (F, Chart I). Our ranks of banks were critical, particularly for investors in brokered CDs, during this recovery period.
IDCFP’s Outlook for the Future - Why Our Ranks are Critical for Investors
Like the period of increasing bank risk in 2005-2006 for those banks issuing brokered CDs, we have witnessed a low number of commercial banks and savings institutions with brokered deposits and CUSIPs ranked below 125, falling to 49 in the 4th quarter of 2018, remaining there in the next quarter, then rising to 51 in the 2nd quarter of 2019. In addition, four components of IDCFP’s CAMEL analysis specific to these institutions reached cycle lows during 2018Q2 and 2019Q1 (see Table III). IDCFP projects the 51 banks will increase to 200 institutions by year-end 2022, therefore financial problems in the banking system will be delayed until 2022.
As the number of high-risk banks increases, so does risk to CD portfolios. However, a strong economy and bank deregulation drive a successful banking environment. With continued economic growth and strong loan demand for select financial institutions, IDCFP forecasts the number of banks issuing brokered CDs and ranked 125 or higher to accelerate from 1430 in 2019Q2 to 2000 by year-end 2022, following the trend established in 2018 and mid-2019 (see Chart I). As in the past, our ranks are critical for investors going forward to monitor the strength of financial institutions during periods of risk or growth.
John E Rickmeier, CFA, President, firstname.lastname@example.org
Robin Rickmeier, Marketing Director