WASHINGTON — With more time to rebuild its coffers and failed-bank losses easing, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Tuesday abandoned an across-the-board premium hike slated to go into effect next year.
The agency had scheduled a uniform rate increase of 3 cents per $100 of domestic deposits, with most banks already paying between 12 to 16 cents. The move was part of an earlier plan to restore an insolvent Deposit Insurance Fund to its minimum of 1.15% of insured deposits.
But the FDIC's premium requirements were overhauled by the recently enacted Dodd-Frank law. While the law requires a stronger DIF, it gives the FDIC more time to replenish reserves.
As a result, the FDIC now has to raise the ratio to 1.35%, but not for another 10 years. It previously was trying to raise the ratio to 1.15% by 2016.
FDIC officials said projections for failed-bank losses also drove the decision to waive the premium increase. The agency said it now expects to lose $52 billion through 2014, which is $8 billion lower than earlier projections.
The FDIC announced the premium decision as a result of a comprehensive plan to manage the DIF over the long term. The FDIC board voted to propose a new target reserve ratio of 2%, which under constant conditions, the agency would hit by 2027. The target is meant to ensure the FDIC has sufficient funds to get it through the next crisis.