Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Assets and Liabilities of Commercial Banks in the United States - H.8

Current Release About Release Dates Notes on Data Announcements Data Download Program

About the Release:

The H.8 release provides an estimated weekly aggregate balance sheet for all commercial banks in the United States. The release also includes separate balance sheet aggregations for several bank groups: domestically chartered commercial banks; large domestically chartered commercial banks; small domestically chartered commercial banks; and foreign-related institutions in the United States. Foreign-related institutions include U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks as well as Edge Act and agreement corporations. Published weekly, the release is typically available to the public by 4:15 p.m. each Friday. If Friday is a federal holiday, then the data are released on Thursday.

The H.8 release is primarily based on data that are reported weekly by a sample of approximately 875 domestically chartered banks and foreign-related institutions. As of December 2009, U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks accounted for about 60 of the weekly reporters and domestically chartered banks made up the rest of the sample. Data for domestically chartered commercial banks and foreign-related institutions that do not report weekly are estimated at a weekly frequency based on quarterly Call Report data.

The percent changes--shown on page 1 of the release and available for customizable download through the Federal Reserve Board's Data Download Program (DDP) at www.federalreserve.gov/datadownload--have been adjusted to remove the effects of nonbank structure activity of $5 billion or more, as well as the effects of the initial consolidation of certain variable interest entities (FIN 46) and off-balance-sheet vehicles (FAS 166/167). Figures reported in the H.8 Notes on the Data are generally used to make these adjustments. A ratio procedure is used to adjust past levels to make them comparable with current levels. For example, if on December 31, 2008 real estate loans at large banks increased by one percent because a large bank acquired a nonbank during that week, the levels for real estate loans at large banks for all weeks prior to December 31, 2008 would be increased by one percent, and then the percent changes would be calculated using those adjusted levels. Percent changes are at a simple annual rate, and are calculated from monthly levels rounded to the nearest $100 million. Monthly percent changes are calculated from pro rata averages of Wednesday values of weekly data. Quarterly percent changes are calculated from quarterly levels, rounded to the nearest $100 million, based on the average of the three monthly levels in each quarter. Annual percent changes are calculated from fourth-quarter levels. Percent changes for series that may have negative levels (net due to related foreign offices and net unrealized gains (losses) on available-for-sale securities) have been excluded from the DDP because the resultant percent changes are difficult to interpret.

Large domestically chartered commercial banks are defined as the top 25 domestically chartered commercial banks ranked by size. Banks are ranked by domestic assets as of the previous commercial bank Call Report to which the H.8 release data have been benchmarked (a cover note to the H.8 release informs the public each time the data have been benchmarked). If a large bank is acquired by a commercial bank or if a large bank leaves the commercial bank universe, then it is replaced with the bank next in line, typically the bank ranked number 26. If a nonbank converts to a commercial bank charter, or if a small bank becomes large in size, it is not considered for the large bank panel (regardless of size) until the data are benchmarked to the subsequent Call Report. As of December 2013, the asset size threshold for inclusion in the large-bank panel was approximately $85 billion. Small domestically chartered commercial banks are defined as all domestically chartered banks outside of the top 25.

To maintain the historical continuity of the data for each bank group, the data for large and small domestically chartered banks are adjusted to remove the estimated effects of mergers and panel shifts between the two bank groups. Balance sheet data for banks acquired in mergers are obtained from Call Reports or from the most recent weekly sample report, if available. A ratio procedure is used to adjust past levels to make them comparable with current levels. Estimated balances are removed from past data for the bank group that lost the assets, and added to past data for the bank group that acquired those assets. For example, if on December 31, 2008 consumer loans at small banks decreased by one percent because a small bank was acquired by a large bank during that week, then the estimates for consumer loans at small banks for all weeks prior to December 31, 2008 would be reduced by one percent, and these weekly amounts would be added to consumer loans at large banks.

For all bank groups, seasonally adjusted and not seasonally adjusted data are provided for each balance sheet item published on the H.8. Seasonal factors are estimated separately for all commercial banks, domestically chartered banks, and large domestically chartered banks, and seasonally adjusted data for small domestically chartered banks and for foreign-related institutions are derived as residuals from those data. This methodology may occasionally result in negative seasonally adjusted levels for some balance sheet items of small domestically chartered banks and of foreign-related institutions.

The reporting form (FR 2644, "Weekly Report of Selected Assets and Liabilities of Domestically Chartered Commercial Banks and U.S. Branches and Agencies of Foreign Banks") and instructions on which the reported weekly data are based may be found at http://www.federalreserve.gov/apps/reportforms/default.aspx.


Last update: May 1, 2014