Financial Crisis

Fed Lent $1.2 Trillion to Banks

Freedom of Information Act requests by Bloomberg News reveal for the first time the extent of the Federal Reserve’s lending during the 2007–08 financial crisis. At its peak in December 2008, the Fed lent $1.2 trillion—the same amount that U.S. homeowners currently owe on bad mortgages. Citigroup and Bank of America borrowed the most, needing $669 billion. (In their best year ever, 2006, those two banks totaled $104 billion in profits.) Many foreign banks also received rescue funds; nearly half the top 30 borrowers were European. Royal Bank of Scotland took the most with $84.5 billion, while UBS took $77.2 billion.