Federal regulators reminded banks Wednesday of the change in their fourth-quarter call reports to reflect higher deposit insurance coverage.

A letter from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and Federal Reserve Board said banks opting for unlimited coverage of zero-interest checking deposits must record which of those deposits exceed the standard insurance limit of $250,000.

The FDIC began offering the extra coverage — which expires at the end of 2009 — in October as part of an effort to bolster liquidity. Under the program, institutions can also opt for temporary coverage of senior unsecured debt.

The regulators also told banks they must still use the former standard insurance limit of $100,000 per account as a benchmark in reporting other data for uninsured deposits.

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