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These Charts Prove It’s Time to Break Up the Big Wall Street Banks

Courtesy of Pam Martens

Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the United States from 1930 to 2018 (St. Louis Fed)

Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the United States from 1930 to 2018 (St. Louis Fed)

By Pam Martens and Russ Martens: July 12, 2018 ~  

According to a statistical release from the Federal Reserve, as of March 31, 2018 there were 1,812 commercial banks in the United States holding consolidated assets of $300 million or more. Of those 1,812 banks, just four banks (JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Citigroup’s Citibank) held 45 percent of the consolidated assets of those 1,812 banks.

But looking at data at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) the situation is even more extreme. The FDIC shows there are 5,606 insured banks in total holding $17.531 trillion in assets. JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and Citigroup’s Citibank are holding 40.42 percent of the assets of all the insured banks in the country.

Let us put it another way. Those four banks represent 0.0007 percent of all banks in the U.S. but they have somehow managed to control 40.42 percent of the assets.

These same four banks also hold the majority of deposits on which they pay a minuscule amount of interest and outsized positions in the credit card market, where, thanks to their lobbyists repealing state usury laws, they can charge double digit interest rates that run into the high teens in some cases.

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