Summary of Significant Accounting Principles
|12 Months Ended|
Dec. 31, 2017
|Accounting Policies [Abstract]|
|Summary of Significant Accounting Principles||
Summary of Significant Accounting Principles
Bank of America Corporation, a bank holding company and a financial holding company, provides a diverse range of financial services and products throughout the U.S. and in certain international markets. The term “the Corporation” as used herein may refer to Bank of America Corporation, individually, Bank of America Corporation and its subsidiaries, or certain of Bank of America Corporation’s subsidiaries or affiliates.
Principles of Consolidation and Basis of Presentation
The Consolidated Financial Statements include the accounts of the Corporation and its majority-owned subsidiaries and those variable interest entities (VIEs) where the Corporation is the primary beneficiary. Intercompany accounts and transactions have been eliminated. Results of operations of acquired companies are included from the dates of acquisition and for VIEs, from the dates that the Corporation became the primary beneficiary. Assets held in an agency or fiduciary capacity are not included in the Consolidated Financial Statements. The Corporation accounts for investments in companies for which it owns a voting interest and for which it has the ability to exercise significant influence over operating and financing decisions using the equity method of accounting. These investments are included in other assets. Equity method investments are subject to impairment testing, and the Corporation’s proportionate share of income or loss is included in other income.
The preparation of the Consolidated Financial Statements in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (GAAP) requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect reported amounts and disclosures. Realized results could materially differ from those estimates and assumptions. Certain prior-period amounts have been reclassified to conform to current period presentation.
On June 1, 2017, the Corporation completed the sale of its non-U.S. consumer credit card business to a third party. The Corporation has indemnified the purchaser for substantially all payment protection insurance (PPI) exposure above reserves assumed by the purchaser. The impact of the sale was an after-tax gain of $103 million, and is presented in the Consolidated Statement of Income as other income of $793 million and an income tax expense of $690 million. The income tax expense was related to gains on the derivatives used to hedge the currency risk of the net investment. Total cash proceeds from the sale were $10.9 billion. The assets of the business sold primarily included consumer credit card receivables of $9.8 billion and $9.2 billion at June 1, 2017 and December 31, 2016 and goodwill of $775 million at both of those period ends. This business was included in All Other.
Change in Tax Law
On December 22, 2017, the President signed into law the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the Tax Act) which made significant changes to federal income tax law including, among other things, reducing the statutory corporate income tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent and changing the taxation of the Corporation’s non-U.S. business activities. On the same date, the Securities and Exchange Commission issued Staff Accounting Bulletin No. 118 which
specifies, among other things, that reasonable estimates of the income tax effects of the Tax Act should be used, if determinable. The Corporation has accounted for the effects of the Tax Act using reasonable estimates based on currently available information and its interpretations thereof. This accounting may change due to, among other things, changes in interpretations the Corporation has made and the issuance of new tax or accounting guidance. GAAP requires that the effects of a change in tax rate from revaluing deferred tax assets and deferred tax liabilities be recognized upon enactment, resulting in $1.9 billion of estimated incremental income tax expense recognized in 2017. The change in tax rate also resulted in a downward valuation adjustment, primarily related to tax-advantaged energy investments, of $946 million recorded in other income.
Change in Accounting Method
GAAP requires that stock-based compensation awards be expensed over the service period (the period they are earned), based on their grant-date fair value. Awards to retirement-eligible employees have no future service requirement, and historically, the Corporation has deemed these awards to be authorized on the grant date, resulting in full recognition of the related expense at that time. Effective October 1, 2017, the Corporation changed its accounting method for determining when these awards are deemed authorized, changing from the grant date to the beginning of the year preceding the grant date when the incentive award plans are generally approved. As a result, the estimated value of the awards is now expensed ratably over the year preceding the grant date. The Corporation believes this change is a preferable method of accounting as it is consistent with the accounting method used by several peer institutions for similar awards and results in an improved pattern of expense recognition.
Adoption of this change is voluntary and has been adopted retrospectively with all prior periods presented herein being restated. The change in accounting method resulted in a decrease in retained earnings of $635 million at January 1, 2015. All other effects of the change on the Consolidated Statement of Income and diluted earnings per share were not material for any period presented; additionally, the impact of the change in accounting method was not material to any interim periods. The change affected consolidated financial information and All Other; it did not affect the business segments.
The following Notes have been impacted by the change in accounting method: Note 13 – Shareholders’ Equity, Note 15 – Earnings Per Common Share, Note 16 – Regulatory Requirements and Restrictions and Note 18 – Stock-based Compensation Plans.
New Accounting Pronouncements
Accounting for Share-based Compensation
Effective January 1, 2017, the Corporation adopted the new accounting standard that simplifies certain aspects of the accounting for share-based payment transactions, including income tax consequences, classification of awards as either equity or liabilities and classification on the statement of cash flows. Under this new accounting standard, all excess tax benefits and tax deficiencies on the delivery of share-based awards are recognized as discrete items in income tax expense or benefit in the Consolidated Statement of Income. Previously such amounts were recorded in shareholders’ equity. The adoption of this new accounting standard resulted in $236 million of tax benefits upon the delivery of share-settled awards in 2017.
Effective January 1, 2018, the Corporation adopted the new accounting standard for recognizing revenue from contracts with customers. The new standard does not impact the timing or measurement of the Corporation’s revenue recognition as it is consistent with the Corporation’s existing accounting for contracts within the scope of the new standard. However, beginning prospectively in 2018, the Corporation’s presentation of certain costs, which are primarily related to underwriting activities, will be presented as operating expenses under the new standard rather than presented net in investment banking income, resulting in an expected increase to both line items of approximately $200 million for the year. The new accounting standard does not have a material impact on the Corporation’s consolidated financial position or results of operations and will not have a material impact on the disclosures in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Effective January 1, 2018, the Corporation early adopted the new standard that simplifies and expands the ability to apply hedge accounting to certain risk management activities. The accounting standard does not have a material impact on the Corporation’s consolidated financial position or results of operations and will not have a material impact on the disclosures in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements. The Corporation recognized an insignificant cumulative-effect adjustment to its January 1, 2018 opening retained earnings to reflect the impact of applying the new standard to certain outstanding hedge strategies, mainly related to fair value hedges of fixed-rate debt instruments.
Recognition and Measurement of Financial Assets and Financial Liabilities
The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued a new accounting standard on recognition and measurement of financial instruments, including certain equity investments and financial liabilities recorded at fair value under the fair value option. Effective January 1, 2015, the Corporation early adopted the provisions related to debit valuation adjustments (DVA) on financial liabilities accounted for under the fair value option. The Corporation adopted the remaining provisions on January 1, 2018, which will not have a material impact on the Corporation’s consolidated financial position, results of operations or disclosures in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Tax Effects in Accumulated Other Comprehensive Income
The FASB issued a new accounting standard effective on January 1, 2019, with early adoption permitted, that addresses certain tax effects in accumulated other comprehensive income (OCI) related to the Tax Act. Under this new accounting standard, those tax effects, representing the difference between the newly enacted federal tax rate of 21 percent and the historical tax rate, may, at the entity’s election, be reclassified from accumulated OCI to retained earnings. The new accounting standard can be applied retrospectively to each period in which the effects of the change in federal tax rate are recognized or applied at the beginning of the period of adoption. The new accounting standard will not have a material impact on the Corporation’s consolidated financial position, results of operations or disclosures in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
The FASB issued a new accounting standard effective on January 1, 2019 that requires substantially all leases to be recorded as assets and liabilities on the balance sheet. On January 5, 2018, the FASB issued an exposure draft proposing an amendment to the standard that, if approved, would permit companies the option to apply the provisions of the new lease standard either prospectively as of the effective date, without adjusting comparative periods presented, or using a modified retrospective transition applicable to all prior periods presented. The Corporation is in the process of reviewing its existing lease portfolios, including certain service contracts for embedded leases, to evaluate the impact of the standard on the consolidated financial statements, as well as the impact to regulatory capital and risk-weighted assets. The effect of the adoption will depend on the lease portfolio at the time of transition and the transition options ultimately available; however, the Corporation does not expect the new accounting standard to have a material impact on its consolidated financial position, results of operations or disclosures in the Notes to the Consolidated Financial Statements.
Accounting for Financial Instruments -- Credit Losses
The FASB issued a new accounting standard effective on January 1, 2020, with early adoption permitted on January 1, 2019, that will require the earlier recognition of credit losses on loans and other financial instruments based on an expected loss model, replacing the incurred loss model that is currently in use. The standard also requires expanded credit quality disclosures, including credit quality indicators disaggregated by vintage. The Corporation is in the process of identifying and implementing required changes to loan loss estimation models and processes and evaluating the impact of this new accounting standard, which at the date of adoption is expected to increase the allowance for credit losses with a resulting negative adjustment to retained earnings.
Significant Accounting Principles
Cash and Cash Equivalents
Cash and cash equivalents include cash on hand, cash items in the process of collection, cash segregated under federal and other brokerage regulations, and amounts due from correspondent banks, the Federal Reserve Bank and certain non-U.S. central banks.
Securities Financing Agreements
Securities borrowed or purchased under agreements to resell and securities loaned or sold under agreements to repurchase (securities financing agreements) are treated as collateralized financing transactions except in instances where the transaction is required to be accounted for as individual sale and purchase transactions. Generally, these agreements are recorded at acquisition or sale price plus accrued interest, except for certain securities financing agreements that the Corporation accounts for under the fair value option. Changes in the fair value of securities financing agreements that are accounted for under the fair value option are recorded in trading account profits in the Consolidated Statement of Income.
The Corporation’s policy is to monitor the market value of the principal amount loaned under resale agreements and obtain collateral from or return collateral pledged to counterparties when appropriate. Securities financing agreements do not create
material credit risk due to these collateral provisions; therefore, an allowance for loan losses is unnecessary.
In transactions where the Corporation acts as the lender in a securities lending agreement and receives securities that can be pledged or sold as collateral, it recognizes an asset on the Consolidated Balance Sheet at fair value, representing the securities received, and a liability, representing the obligation to return those securities.
The Corporation accepts securities and loans as collateral that it is permitted by contract or practice to sell or repledge. At December 31, 2017 and 2016, the fair value of this collateral was $561.9 billion and $452.1 billion, of which $476.1 billion and $372.0 billion was sold or repledged. The primary source of this collateral is securities borrowed or purchased under agreements to resell.
The Corporation also pledges company-owned securities and loans as collateral in transactions that include repurchase agreements, securities loaned, public and trust deposits, U.S. Treasury tax and loan notes, and short-term borrowings. This collateral, which in some cases can be sold or repledged by the counterparties to the transactions, is parenthetically disclosed on the Consolidated Balance Sheet.
In certain cases, the Corporation has transferred assets to consolidated VIEs where those restricted assets serve as collateral for the interests issued by the VIEs. These assets are included on the Consolidated Balance Sheet in Assets of Consolidated VIEs.
In addition, the Corporation obtains collateral in connection with its derivative contracts. Required collateral levels vary depending on the credit risk rating and the type of counterparty. Generally, the Corporation accepts collateral in the form of cash, U.S. Treasury securities and other marketable securities. Based on provisions contained in master netting agreements, the Corporation nets cash collateral received against derivative assets. The Corporation also pledges collateral on its own derivative positions which can be applied against derivative liabilities.
Financial instruments utilized in trading activities are carried at fair value. Fair value is generally based on quoted market prices or quoted market prices for similar assets and liabilities. If these market prices are not available, fair values are estimated based on dealer quotes, pricing models, discounted cash flow methodologies, or similar techniques where the determination of fair value may require significant management judgment or estimation. Realized gains and losses are recorded on a trade-date basis. Realized and unrealized gains and losses are recognized in trading account profits.
Derivatives and Hedging Activities
Derivatives are entered into on behalf of customers, for trading or to support risk management activities. Derivatives used in risk management activities include derivatives that are both designated in qualifying accounting hedge relationships and derivatives used to hedge market risks in relationships that are not designated in qualifying accounting hedge relationships
(referred to as other risk management activities). The Corporation manages interest rate and foreign currency exchange rate sensitivity predominantly through the use of derivatives. Derivatives utilized by the Corporation include swaps, futures and forward settlement contracts, and option contracts.
All derivatives are recorded on the Consolidated Balance Sheet at fair value, taking into consideration the effects of legally enforceable master netting agreements that allow the Corporation to settle positive and negative positions and offset cash collateral held with the same counterparty on a net basis. For exchange-traded contracts, fair value is based on quoted market prices in active or inactive markets or is derived from observable market- based pricing parameters, similar to those applied to over-the-counter (OTC) derivatives. For non-exchange traded contracts, fair value is based on dealer quotes, pricing models, discounted cash flow methodologies or similar techniques for which the determination of fair value may require significant management judgment or estimation.
Valuations of derivative assets and liabilities reflect the value of the instrument including counterparty credit risk. These values also take into account the Corporation’s own credit standing.
Trading Derivatives and Other Risk Management Activities
Derivatives held for trading purposes are included in derivative assets or derivative liabilities on the Consolidated Balance Sheet with changes in fair value included in trading account profits.
Derivatives used for other risk management activities are included in derivative assets or derivative liabilities. Derivatives used in other risk management activities have not been designated in qualifying accounting hedge relationships because they did not qualify or the risk that is being mitigated pertains to an item that is reported at fair value through earnings so that the effect of measuring the derivative instrument and the asset or liability to which the risk exposure pertains will offset in the Consolidated Statement of Income to the extent effective. The changes in the fair value of derivatives that serve to mitigate certain risks associated with mortgage servicing rights (MSRs), interest rate lock commitments (IRLCs) and first mortgage loans held-for-sale (LHFS) that are originated by the Corporation are recorded in mortgage banking income. Changes in the fair value of derivatives that serve to mitigate interest rate risk and foreign currency risk are included in other income. Credit derivatives are also used by the Corporation to mitigate the risk associated with various credit exposures. The changes in the fair value of these derivatives are included in other income.
Derivatives Used For Hedge Accounting Purposes (Accounting Hedges)
For accounting hedges, the Corporation formally documents at inception all relationships between hedging instruments and hedged items, as well as the risk management objectives and strategies for undertaking various accounting hedges. Additionally, the Corporation primarily uses regression analysis at the inception of a hedge and for each reporting period thereafter to assess whether the derivative used in an accounting hedge transaction is expected to be and has been highly effective in offsetting changes in the fair value or cash flows of a hedged item or forecasted transaction. The Corporation discontinues hedge accounting when it is determined that a derivative is not expected to be or has ceased to be highly effective as a hedge, and then reflects changes in fair value of the derivative in earnings after termination of the hedge relationship.
Fair value hedges are used to protect against changes in the fair value of the Corporation’s assets and liabilities that are attributable to interest rate or foreign exchange volatility. Changes in the fair value of derivatives designated as fair value hedges are recorded in earnings, together and in the same income statement line item with changes in the fair value of the related hedged item. If a derivative instrument in a fair value hedge is terminated or the hedge designation removed, the previous adjustments to the carrying value of the hedged asset or liability are subsequently accounted for in the same manner as other components of the carrying value of that asset or liability. For interest-earning assets and interest-bearing liabilities, such adjustments are amortized to earnings over the remaining life of the respective asset or liability.
Cash flow hedges are used primarily to minimize the variability in cash flows of assets and liabilities, or forecasted transactions caused by interest rate or foreign exchange rate fluctuations. Changes in the fair value of derivatives used in cash flow hedges are recorded in accumulated OCI and are reclassified into the line item in the income statement in which the hedged item is recorded in the same period the hedged item affects earnings. Hedge ineffectiveness and gains and losses on the component of a derivative excluded in assessing hedge effectiveness are recorded in the same income statement line item.
Net investment hedges are used to manage the foreign exchange rate sensitivity arising from a net investment in a foreign operation. Changes in the fair value of derivatives designated as net investment hedges of foreign operations, to the extent effective, are recorded as a component of accumulated OCI.
Debt securities are reported on the Consolidated Balance Sheet at their trade date. Their classification is dependent on the purpose for which the assets were acquired. Debt securities purchased for use in the Corporation’s trading activities are reported in trading account assets at fair value with unrealized gains and losses included in trading account profits. Substantially all other debt securities purchased are used in the Corporation’s asset and liability management (ALM) activities and are reported on the Consolidated Balance Sheet as either debt securities carried at fair value or as debt securities held-to-maturity (HTM). Debt securities carried at fair value are either available-for-sale (AFS) securities with unrealized gains and losses net-of-tax included in accumulated OCI or carried at fair value with unrealized gains and losses reported in other income. Debt securities HTM, which are certain debt securities that management has the intent and ability to hold to maturity, are reported at amortized cost.
The Corporation regularly evaluates each AFS and HTM debt security where the value has declined below amortized cost to assess whether the decline in fair value is other than temporary. In determining whether an impairment is other than temporary, the Corporation considers the severity and duration of the decline in fair value, the length of time expected for recovery, the financial condition of the issuer, and other qualitative factors, as well as whether the Corporation either plans to sell the security or it is more-likely-than-not that it will be required to sell the security before recovery of the amortized cost. For AFS debt securities the Corporation intends to hold, an analysis is performed to determine how much of the decline in fair value is related to the issuer’s credit and how much is related to market factors (e.g., interest rates). If any of the decline in fair value is due to credit, an other-than-temporary impairment (OTTI) loss is recognized in the Consolidated Statement of Income for that amount. If any of the decline in fair value is related to market factors, that amount is recognized in accumulated OCI. In certain instances, the credit loss may exceed the total decline in fair value, in which case, the difference is due to market factors and is recognized as an unrealized gain in accumulated OCI. If the Corporation intends to sell or believes it is more-likely-than-not that it will be required to sell the debt security, it is written down to fair value as an OTTI loss.
Interest on debt securities, including amortization of premiums and accretion of discounts, is included in interest income. Premiums and discounts are amortized or accreted to interest income at a constant effective yield over the contractual lives of the securities. Realized gains and losses from the sales of debt securities are determined using the specific identification method.
Marketable equity securities are classified based on management’s intention on the date of purchase and recorded on the Consolidated Balance Sheet as of the trade date. Marketable equity securities that are bought and held principally for the purpose of resale in the near term are classified as trading and are carried at fair value with unrealized gains and losses included in trading account profits. Other marketable equity securities are accounted for as AFS and classified in other assets. All AFS marketable equity securities are carried at fair value with net unrealized gains and losses included in accumulated OCI, net-of-tax. If there is an other-than-temporary decline in the fair value of any individual AFS marketable equity security, the cost basis is reduced and the Corporation reclassifies the associated net unrealized loss out of accumulated OCI with a corresponding charge to other income. Dividend income on AFS marketable equity securities is included in other income. Realized gains and losses on the sale of all AFS marketable equity securities, which are recorded in other income, are determined using the specific identification method.
Loans and Leases
Loans, with the exception of loans accounted for under the fair value option, are measured at historical cost and reported at their outstanding principal balances net of any unearned income, charge-offs, unamortized deferred fees and costs on originated loans, and for purchased loans, net of any unamortized premiums or discounts. Loan origination fees and certain direct origination costs are deferred and recognized as adjustments to interest income over the lives of the related loans. Unearned income, discounts and premiums are amortized to interest income using a level yield methodology. The Corporation elects to account for certain consumer and commercial loans under the fair value option with changes in fair value reported in other income.
Under applicable accounting guidance, for reporting purposes, the loan and lease portfolio is categorized by portfolio segment and, within each portfolio segment, by class of financing receivables. A portfolio segment is defined as the level at which an entity develops and documents a systematic methodology to determine the allowance for credit losses, and a class of financing receivables is defined as the level of disaggregation of portfolio segments based on the initial measurement attribute, risk characteristics and methods for assessing risk. The Corporation’s three portfolio segments are Consumer Real Estate, Credit Card and Other Consumer, and Commercial. The classes within the Consumer Real Estate portfolio segment are residential mortgage and home equity. The classes within the Credit Card and Other Consumer portfolio segment are U.S. credit card, non-U.S. credit card (sold in 2017), direct/indirect consumer and other consumer. The classes within the Commercial portfolio segment are U.S. commercial, non-U.S. commercial, commercial real estate, commercial lease financing and U.S. small business commercial.
Purchased Credit-impaired Loans
Purchased loans with evidence of credit quality deterioration as of the purchase date for which it is probable that the Corporation will not receive all contractually required payments receivable are accounted for as purchased credit-impaired (PCI) loans. Evidence of credit quality deterioration since origination may include past due status, refreshed credit scores and refreshed loan-to-value (LTV) ratios. At acquisition, PCI loans are recorded at fair value with no allowance for credit losses, and accounted for individually or aggregated in pools based on similar risk characteristics such as credit risk, collateral type and interest rate risk. The Corporation estimates the amount and timing of expected cash flows for each loan or pool of loans. The expected cash flows in excess of the amount paid for the loans is referred to as the accretable yield and is recorded as interest income over the remaining estimated life of the loan or pool of loans. The excess of the PCI loans’ contractual principal and interest over the expected cash flows is referred to as the nonaccretable difference. Over the life of the PCI loans, the expected cash flows continue to be estimated using models that incorporate management’s estimate of current assumptions such as default rates, loss severity and prepayment speeds. If, upon subsequent valuation, the Corporation determines it is probable that the present value of the expected cash flows has decreased, a charge to the provision for credit losses is recorded with a corresponding increase in the allowance for credit losses. If it is probable that there is a significant increase in the present value of expected cash flows, the allowance for credit losses is reduced or, if there is no remaining allowance for credit losses related to these PCI loans, the accretable yield is increased through a reclassification from nonaccretable difference, resulting in a prospective increase in interest income. Reclassifications to or from nonaccretable difference can also occur for changes in the PCI loans’ estimated lives. If a loan within a PCI pool is sold, foreclosed, forgiven or the expectation of any future proceeds is remote, the loan is removed from the pool at its proportional carrying value. If the loan’s recovery value is less than the loan’s carrying value, the difference is first applied against the PCI pool’s nonaccretable difference and then against the allowance for credit losses.
The Corporation provides equipment financing to its customers through a variety of lease arrangements. Direct financing leases are carried at the aggregate of lease payments receivable plus estimated residual value of the leased property less unearned income. Leveraged leases, which are a form of financing leases, are reported net of non-recourse debt. Unearned income on leveraged and direct financing leases is accreted to interest income over the lease terms using methods that approximate the interest method.
Allowance for Credit Losses
The allowance for credit losses, which includes the allowance for loan and lease losses and the reserve for unfunded lending commitments, represents management’s estimate of probable losses inherent in the Corporation’s lending activities excluding loans and unfunded lending commitments accounted for under the fair value option. The allowance for loan and lease losses represents the estimated probable credit losses on funded consumer and commercial loans and leases while the reserve for unfunded lending commitments, including standby letters of credit (SBLCs) and binding unfunded loan commitments, represents estimated probable credit losses on these unfunded credit instruments based on utilization assumptions. Lending-related credit exposures deemed to be uncollectible, excluding loans carried at fair value, are charged off against these accounts. Write-offs on PCI loans on which there is a valuation allowance are recorded against the valuation allowance. For more information, see Purchased Credit-impaired Loans in this Note.
The Corporation performs periodic and systematic detailed reviews of its lending portfolios to identify credit risks and to assess the overall collectability of those portfolios. The allowance on certain homogeneous consumer loan portfolios, which generally consist of consumer real estate loans within the Consumer Real Estate portfolio segment and credit card loans within the Credit Card and Other Consumer portfolio segment, is based on aggregated portfolio segment evaluations generally by product type. Loss forecast models are utilized for these portfolios which consider a variety of factors including, but not limited to, historical loss experience, estimated defaults or foreclosures based on portfolio trends, delinquencies, bankruptcies, economic conditions, credit scores and the amount of loss in the event of default.
For consumer loans secured by residential real estate, using statistical modeling methodologies, the Corporation estimates the number of loans that will default based on the individual loan attributes aggregated into pools of homogeneous loans with similar attributes. The attributes that are most significant to the probability of default and are used to estimate defaults include refreshed LTV or, in the case of a subordinated lien, refreshed combined LTV (CLTV), borrower credit score, months since origination (referred to as vintage) and geography, all of which are further broken down by present collection status (whether the loan is current, delinquent, in default or in bankruptcy). The severity or loss given default is estimated based on the refreshed LTV for first mortgages or CLTV for subordinated liens. The estimates are based on the Corporation’s historical experience with the loan portfolio, adjusted to reflect an assessment of environmental factors not yet reflected in the historical data underlying the loss estimates, such as changes in real estate values, local and national economies, underwriting standards and the regulatory environment. The probability of default models also incorporate recent experience with modification programs including re-defaults subsequent to modification, a loan’s default history prior to modification and the change in borrower payments post-modification. On home equity loans where the Corporation holds only a second-lien position and foreclosure is not the best alternative, the loss severity is estimated at 100 percent.
The allowance on certain commercial loans (except business card and certain small business loans) is calculated using loss rates delineated by risk rating and product type. Factors considered when assessing loss rates include the value of the underlying collateral, if applicable, the industry of the obligor, and the obligor’s liquidity and other financial indicators along with certain qualitative factors. These statistical models are updated regularly for changes in economic and business conditions. Included in the analysis of consumer and commercial loan portfolios are reserves which are maintained to cover uncertainties that affect the Corporation’s estimate of probable losses including domestic and global economic uncertainty and large single-name defaults.
For impaired loans, which include nonperforming commercial loans as well as consumer and commercial loans and leases modified in a troubled debt restructuring (TDR), management measures impairment primarily based on the present value of payments expected to be received, discounted at the loans’ original effective contractual interest rates. Credit card loans are discounted at the portfolio average contractual annual percentage rate, excluding promotionally priced loans, in effect prior to restructuring. Impaired loans and TDRs may also be measured based on observable market prices, or for loans that are solely dependent on the collateral for repayment, the estimated fair value of the collateral less costs to sell. If the recorded investment in impaired loans exceeds this amount, a specific allowance is established as a component of the allowance for loan and lease losses unless these are secured consumer loans that are solely dependent on the collateral for repayment, in which case the amount that exceeds the fair value of the collateral is charged off.
Generally, the Corporation initially estimates the fair value of the collateral securing these consumer real estate-secured loans using an automated valuation model (AVM). An AVM is a tool that estimates the value of a property by reference to market data including sales of comparable properties and price trends specific to the Metropolitan Statistical Area in which the property being valued is located. In the event that an AVM value is not available, the Corporation utilizes publicized indices or if these methods provide less reliable valuations, the Corporation uses appraisals or broker price opinions to estimate the fair value of the collateral. While there is inherent imprecision in these valuations, the Corporation believes that they are representative of the portfolio in the aggregate.
In addition to the allowance for loan and lease losses, the Corporation also estimates probable losses related to unfunded lending commitments, such as letters of credit, financial guarantees and binding unfunded loan commitments. Unfunded lending commitments are subject to individual reviews and are analyzed and segregated by risk according to the Corporation’s internal risk rating scale. These risk classifications, in conjunction with an analysis of historical loss experience, utilization assumptions, current economic conditions, performance trends within the portfolio and any other pertinent information, result in the estimation of the reserve for unfunded lending commitments.
The allowance for credit losses related to the loan and lease portfolio is reported separately on the Consolidated Balance Sheet whereas the reserve for unfunded lending commitments is reported on the Consolidated Balance Sheet in accrued expenses and other liabilities. The provision for credit losses related to the loan and lease portfolio and unfunded lending commitments is reported in the Consolidated Statement of Income.
Nonperforming Loans and Leases, Charge-offs and Delinquencies
Nonperforming loans and leases generally include loans and leases that have been placed on nonaccrual status. Loans accounted for under the fair value option, PCI loans and LHFS are not reported as nonperforming.
In accordance with the Corporation’s policies, consumer real estate-secured loans, including residential mortgages and home equity loans, are generally placed on nonaccrual status and classified as nonperforming at 90 days past due unless repayment of the loan is insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) or through individually insured long-term standby agreements with Fannie Mae (FNMA) or Freddie Mac (FHLMC) (the fully-insured portfolio). Residential mortgage loans in the fully-insured portfolio are not placed on nonaccrual status and, therefore, are not reported as nonperforming. Junior-lien home equity loans are placed on nonaccrual status and classified as nonperforming when the underlying first-lien mortgage loan becomes 90 days past due even if the junior-lien loan is current. The outstanding balance of real estate-secured loans that is in excess of the estimated property value less costs to sell is charged off no later than the end of the month in which the loan becomes 180 days past due unless the loan is fully insured, or for loans in bankruptcy, within 60 days of receipt of notification of filing, with the remaining balance classified as nonperforming.
Consumer loans secured by personal property, credit card loans and other unsecured consumer loans are not placed on nonaccrual status prior to charge-off and, therefore, are not reported as nonperforming loans, except for certain secured consumer loans, including those that have been modified in a TDR. Personal property-secured loans (including auto loans) are charged off to collateral value no later than the end of the month in which the account becomes 120 days past due, or upon repossession of an auto or, for loans in bankruptcy, within 60 days of receipt of notification of filing. Credit card and other unsecured customer loans are charged off no later than the end of the month in which the account becomes 180 days past due or within 60 days after receipt of notification of death, bankruptcy or fraud.
Commercial loans and leases, excluding business card loans, that are past due 90 days or more as to principal or interest, or where reasonable doubt exists as to timely collection, including loans that are individually identified as being impaired, are generally placed on nonaccrual status and classified as nonperforming unless well-secured and in the process of collection.
Business card loans are charged off no later than the end of the month in which the account becomes 180 days past due or 60 days after receipt of notification of death or bankruptcy. These loans are not placed on nonaccrual status prior to charge-off and, therefore, are not reported as nonperforming loans. Other commercial loans and leases are generally charged off when all or a portion of the principal amount is determined to be uncollectible.
The entire balance of a consumer loan or commercial loan or lease is contractually delinquent if the minimum payment is not received by the specified due date on the customer’s billing statement. Interest and fees continue to accrue on past due loans and leases until the date the loan is placed on nonaccrual status, if applicable. Accrued interest receivable is reversed when loans and leases are placed on nonaccrual status. Interest collections on nonaccruing loans and leases for which the ultimate collectability of principal is uncertain are applied as principal reductions; otherwise, such collections are credited to income when received. Loans and leases may be restored to accrual status when all principal and interest is current and full repayment of the remaining contractual principal and interest is expected.
PCI loans are recorded at fair value at the acquisition date. Although the PCI loans may be contractually delinquent, the Corporation does not classify these loans as nonperforming as the loans were written down to fair value at the acquisition date and the accretable yield is recognized in interest income over the remaining life of the loan. In addition, reported net charge-offs exclude write-offs on PCI loans as the fair value already considers the estimated credit losses.
Troubled Debt Restructurings
Consumer and commercial loans and leases whose contractual terms have been restructured in a manner that grants a concession to a borrower experiencing financial difficulties are classified as TDRs. Concessions could include a reduction in the interest rate to a rate that is below market on the loan, payment extensions, forgiveness of principal, forbearance or other actions designed to maximize collections. Loans that are carried at fair value, LHFS and PCI loans are not classified as TDRs.
Loans and leases whose contractual terms have been modified in a TDR and are current at the time of restructuring may remain on accrual status if there is demonstrated performance prior to the restructuring and payment in full under the restructured terms is expected. Otherwise, the loans are placed on nonaccrual status and reported as nonperforming, except for fully-insured consumer real estate loans, until there is sustained repayment performance for a reasonable period, generally six months. If accruing TDRs cease to perform in accordance with their modified contractual terms, they are placed on nonaccrual status and reported as nonperforming TDRs.
Secured consumer loans that have been discharged in Chapter 7 bankruptcy and have not been reaffirmed by the borrower are classified as TDRs at the time of discharge. Such loans are placed on nonaccrual status and written down to the estimated collateral value less costs to sell no later than at the time of discharge. If these loans are contractually current, interest collections are generally recorded in interest income on a cash basis. Consumer real estate-secured loans for which a binding offer to restructure has been extended are also classified as TDRs. Credit card and other unsecured consumer loans that have been renegotiated in a TDR generally remain on accrual status until the loan is either paid in full or charged off, which occurs no later than the end of the month in which the loan becomes 180 days past due or, for loans that have been placed on a fixed payment plan, 120 days past due.
A loan that had previously been modified in a TDR and is subsequently refinanced under current underwriting standards at a market rate with no concessionary terms is accounted for as a new loan and is no longer reported as a TDR.
Loans that are intended to be sold in the foreseeable future, including residential mortgages, loan syndications, and to a lesser degree, commercial real estate, consumer finance and other loans, are reported as LHFS and are carried at the lower of aggregate cost or fair value. The Corporation accounts for certain LHFS, including residential mortgage LHFS, under the fair value option. Loan origination costs related to LHFS that the Corporation accounts for under the fair value option are recognized in noninterest expense when incurred. Loan origination costs for LHFS carried at the lower of cost or fair value are capitalized as part of the carrying value of the loans and recognized as a reduction of noninterest income upon the sale of such loans. LHFS that are on nonaccrual status and are reported as nonperforming, as defined in the policy herein, are reported separately from nonperforming loans and leases.
Premises and Equipment
Premises and equipment are carried at cost less accumulated depreciation and amortization. Depreciation and amortization are recognized using the straight-line method over the estimated useful lives of the assets. Estimated lives range up to 40 years for buildings, up to 12 years for furniture and equipment, and the shorter of lease term or estimated useful life for leasehold improvements.
Goodwill and Intangible Assets
Goodwill is the purchase premium after adjusting for the fair value of net assets acquired. Goodwill is not amortized but is reviewed for potential impairment on an annual basis, or when events or circumstances indicate a potential impairment, at the reporting unit level. A reporting unit is a business segment or one level below a business segment. The Corporation compares the fair value of each reporting unit with its carrying value, including goodwill, as measured by allocated equity. For purposes of goodwill impairment testing, the Corporation utilizes allocated equity as a proxy for the carrying value of its reporting units. Allocated equity in the reporting units is comprised of allocated capital plus capital for the portion of goodwill and intangibles specifically assigned to the reporting unit. If the fair value of the reporting unit exceeds its carrying value, goodwill of the reporting unit is considered not impaired; however, if the carrying value of the reporting unit exceeds its fair value, an additional step must be performed to measure potential impairment.
This step involves calculating an implied fair value of goodwill which is the excess of the fair value of the reporting unit, as determined in the first step, over the aggregate fair values of the assets, liabilities and identifiable intangibles as if the reporting unit was being acquired in a business combination. If the implied fair value of goodwill exceeds the goodwill assigned to the reporting unit, there is no impairment. If the goodwill assigned to a reporting unit exceeds the implied fair value of goodwill, an impairment charge is recorded for the excess. An impairment loss recognized cannot exceed the amount of goodwill assigned to a reporting unit. An impairment loss establishes a new basis in the goodwill and subsequent reversals of goodwill impairment losses are not permitted under applicable accounting guidance.
For intangible assets subject to amortization, an impairment loss is recognized if the carrying value of the intangible asset is not recoverable and exceeds fair value. The carrying value of the intangible asset is considered not recoverable if it exceeds the sum of the undiscounted cash flows expected to result from the use of the asset. Intangible assets deemed to have indefinite useful lives are not subject to amortization. An impairment loss is recognized if the carrying value of the intangible asset with an indefinite life exceeds its fair value.
Variable Interest Entities
A VIE is an entity that lacks equity investors or whose equity investors do not have a controlling financial interest in the entity through their equity investments. The Corporation consolidates a VIE if it has both the power to direct the activities of the VIE that most significantly impact the VIE’s economic performance and an obligation to absorb losses or the right to receive benefits that could potentially be significant to the VIE. On a quarterly basis, the Corporation reassesses its involvement with the VIE and evaluates the impact of changes in governing documents and its financial interests in the VIE. The consolidation status of the VIEs with which the Corporation is involved may change as a result of such reassessments.
The Corporation primarily uses VIEs for its securitization activities, in which the Corporation transfers whole loans or debt securities into a trust or other vehicle. When the Corporation is the servicer of whole loans held in a securitization trust, including non-agency residential mortgages, home equity loans, credit cards, and other loans, the Corporation has the power to direct the most significant activities of the trust. The Corporation generally does not have the power to direct the most significant activities of a residential mortgage agency trust except in certain circumstances in which the Corporation holds substantially all of the issued securities and has the unilateral right to liquidate the trust. The power to direct the most significant activities of a commercial mortgage securitization trust is typically held by the special servicer or by the party holding specific subordinate securities which embody certain controlling rights. The Corporation consolidates a whole-loan securitization trust if it has the power to direct the most significant activities and also holds securities issued by the trust or has other contractual arrangements, other than standard representations and warranties, that could potentially be significant to the trust.
The Corporation may also transfer trading account securities and AFS securities into municipal bond or resecuritization trusts. The Corporation consolidates a municipal bond or resecuritization trust if it has control over the ongoing activities of the trust such as the remarketing of the trust’s liabilities or, if there are no ongoing activities, sole discretion over the design of the trust, including the identification of securities to be transferred in and the structure of securities to be issued, and also retains securities or has liquidity or other commitments that could potentially be significant to the trust. The Corporation does not consolidate a municipal bond or resecuritization trust if one or a limited number of third-party investors share responsibility for the design of the trust or have control over the significant activities of the trust through liquidation or other substantive rights.
Other VIEs used by the Corporation include collateralized debt obligations (CDOs), investment vehicles created on behalf of customers and other investment vehicles. The Corporation does not routinely serve as collateral manager for CDOs and, therefore, does not typically have the power to direct the activities that most significantly impact the economic performance of a CDO. However, following an event of default, if the Corporation is a majority holder of senior securities issued by a CDO and acquires the power to manage its assets, the Corporation consolidates the CDO.
The Corporation consolidates a customer or other investment vehicle if it has control over the initial design of the vehicle or manages the assets in the vehicle and also absorbs potentially significant gains or losses through an investment in the vehicle, derivative contracts or other arrangements. The Corporation does not consolidate an investment vehicle if a single investor controlled the initial design of the vehicle or manages the assets in the vehicles or if the Corporation does not have a variable interest that could potentially be significant to the vehicle.
Retained interests in securitized assets are initially recorded at fair value. In addition, the Corporation may invest in debt securities issued by unconsolidated VIEs. Fair values of these debt securities, which are classified as trading account assets, debt securities carried at fair value or HTM securities, are based primarily on quoted market prices in active or inactive markets. Generally, quoted market prices for retained residual interests are not available; therefore, the Corporation estimates fair values based on the present value of the associated expected future cash flows.
The Corporation measures the fair values of its assets and liabilities, where applicable, in accordance with accounting guidance that requires an entity to base fair value on exit price. Under this guidance, an entity is required to maximize the use of observable inputs and minimize the use of unobservable inputs in measuring fair value. A hierarchy is established which categorizes fair value measurements into three levels based on the inputs to the valuation technique with the highest priority given to unadjusted quoted prices in active markets and the lowest priority given to unobservable inputs. The Corporation categorizes its fair value measurements of financial instruments based on this three-level hierarchy.
There are two components of income tax expense: current and deferred. Current income tax expense reflects taxes to be paid or refunded for the current period. Deferred income tax expense results from changes in deferred tax assets and liabilities between periods. These gross deferred tax assets and liabilities represent decreases or increases in taxes expected to be paid in the future because of future reversals of temporary differences in the bases of assets and liabilities as measured by tax laws and their bases as reported in the financial statements. Deferred tax assets are also recognized for tax attributes such as net operating loss carryforwards and tax credit carryforwards. Valuation allowances are recorded to reduce deferred tax assets to the amounts management concludes are more-likely-than-not to be realized.
Income tax benefits are recognized and measured based upon a two-step model: first, a tax position must be more-likely-than-not to be sustained based solely on its technical merits in order to be recognized, and second, the benefit is measured as the largest dollar amount of that position that is more-likely-than-not to be sustained upon settlement. The difference between the benefit recognized and the tax benefit claimed on a tax return is referred to as an unrecognized tax benefit. The Corporation records income tax-related interest and penalties, if applicable, within income tax expense.
Revenue is recorded when earned, which is generally over the period services are provided and no contingencies exist. The following summarizes the Corporation’s revenue recognition policies as they relate to certain noninterest income line items in the Consolidated Statement of Income.
Card income includes fees such as interchange, cash advance, annual, late, over-limit and other miscellaneous fees. Uncollected fees are included in customer card receivables balances with an amount recorded in the allowance for loan and lease losses for estimated uncollectible card receivables. Uncollected fees are written off when a card receivable reaches 180 days past due.
Service charges include fees for insufficient funds, overdrafts and other banking services. Uncollected fees are included in outstanding loan balances with an amount recorded for estimated uncollectible service fees receivable. Uncollected fees are written off when a fee receivable reaches 60 days past due.
Investment and brokerage services revenue consists primarily of asset management fees and brokerage income. Asset management fees consist primarily of fees for investment management and trust services and are generally based on the dollar amount of the assets being managed. Brokerage income generally includes commissions and fees earned on the sale of various financial products.
Investment banking income consists primarily of advisory and underwriting fees which are generally recognized net of any direct expenses. Non-reimbursed expenses are recorded as noninterest expense.
Earnings Per Common Share
Earnings per common share (EPS) is computed by dividing net income allocated to common shareholders by the weighted-average common shares outstanding, excluding unvested common shares subject to repurchase or cancellation. Net income allocated to common shareholders is net income adjusted for preferred stock dividends including dividends declared, accretion of discounts on preferred stock including accelerated accretion when preferred stock is repaid early, and cumulative dividends related to the current dividend period that have not been declared as of period end, less income allocated to participating securities (see below for more information). Diluted EPS is computed by dividing income allocated to common shareholders plus dividends on dilutive convertible preferred stock and preferred stock that can be tendered to exercise warrants, by the weighted-average common shares outstanding plus amounts representing the dilutive effect of stock options outstanding, restricted stock, restricted stock units (RSUs), outstanding warrants and the dilution resulting from the conversion of convertible preferred stock, if applicable.
Foreign Currency Translation
Assets, liabilities and operations of foreign branches and subsidiaries are recorded based on the functional currency of each entity. When the functional currency of a foreign operation is the local currency, the assets, liabilities and operations are translated, for consolidation purposes, from the local currency to the U.S. dollar reporting currency at period-end rates for assets and liabilities and generally at average rates for results of operations. The resulting unrealized gains and losses are reported as a component of accumulated OCI, net-of-tax. When the foreign entity’s functional currency is the U.S. dollar, the resulting remeasurement gains or losses on foreign currency-denominated assets or liabilities are included in earnings.
Credit Card and Deposit Arrangements
Endorsing Organization Agreements
The Corporation contracts with other organizations to obtain their endorsement of the Corporation’s loan and deposit products. This endorsement may provide to the Corporation exclusive rights to market to the organization’s members or to customers on behalf of the Corporation. These organizations endorse the Corporation’s loan and deposit products and provide the Corporation with their mailing lists and marketing activities. These agreements generally have terms that range five or more years. The Corporation typically pays royalties in exchange for the endorsement. Compensation costs related to the credit card agreements are recorded as contra-revenue in card income.
Cardholder Reward Agreements
The Corporation offers reward programs that allow its cardholders to earn points that can be redeemed for a broad range of rewards including cash, travel and gift cards. The Corporation establishes a rewards liability based upon the points earned that are expected to be redeemed and the average cost per point redeemed. The points to be redeemed are estimated based on past redemption behavior, card product type, account transaction activity and other historical card performance. The liability is reduced as the points are redeemed. The estimated cost of the rewards programs is recorded as contra-revenue in card income.
The entire disclosure for all significant accounting policies of the reporting entity.
Reference 1: http://www.xbrl.org/2003/role/presentationRef