Banks poised to get fee windfall from small-business stimulus
Earlier this year, thousands of lenders rushed to arrange loans under the U.S. government's Paycheck Protection Program. Now, some of them will be rewarded handsomely.
More than 30 banks across the country, including dozens of community banks and some lenders with more than $1 billion in assets, could generate fees that surpass their 2019 net revenue before set-asides for loan losses, according to a study distributed Tuesday by S&P Global Market Intelligence. The firms that will reap the biggest gains are the ones that punched above their weight in arranging loans for the rescue program.
The Small Business Administration's $669 billion Paycheck Protection Program was launched in April as part of the $2 trillion CARES Act passed by Congress to help the U.S. economy through the coronavirus pandemic. The program was initially marred by confusion and technological glitches as banks large and small raced to secure loan funding for their clients.
As of June 30, lenders arranged almost 4.9 million loans supporting more than 51 million jobs, according to the SBA. Fees range from 1% to 5% for each loan, depending on its size.
Cross River a Fort Lee, N.J., bank with $2.5 billion in assets at the end of the first quarter, arranged more than $5 billion in PPP loans, making it the 13th-most-active lender, according to the SBA. S&P estimates that Cross River will pull in $163 million in related fees, more than double its pre-provision net revenue last year.
JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, Truist, PNC and Wells Fargo were the top five PPP lenders by volume, arranging a combined $91 billion as of June 30, SBA figures show. JPMorgan could make $864 million in related fees, according to S&P, but that will "represent a modest boost to the top line." And JPMorgan is among the lenders, also including Bank of America and Wells Fargo, that plan to donate the fees.