Bank of America Defers $7.7 Billion of Commercial Loans Amid Pandemic

Bank of America Corp. has deferred $7.7 billion of loans for commercial clients in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

About 2% of clients’ commercial loans had been modified as of July 23, mainly consisting of payment deferrals of as long as 90 days, according to a quarterly regulatory filing Friday. Interest continues to accrue on those loans, and some borrowers received short-term waivers on covenants. In the consumer and small-business division, deferrals reached $28.5 billion.

“The U.S. and global economies have been negatively impacted and are likely to be so for an extended period of time, as there remains significant uncertainty about the timing and strength of an economic recovery,” Bank of America, the second-largest U.S. bank by assets, said in the filing. “Should current economic conditions persist or continue to deteriorate, we expect that this macroeconomic environment will have a continued adverse effect on our businesses.”

Consumer deferrals have started to roll off in recent weeks, with 1.4 million in place on July 23, down from about 1.7 million two weeks earlier. More than 95% of customers who requested to delay credit-card payments were current on their accounts, according to the Charlotte, North Carolina-based lender. Of those granted credit-card deferrals, about 61% have made at least one payment, while 33% have made a payment every month.

In consumer cards, 7% of balances had loan modifications. The program comprises initial deferrals of as long as 60 days, with automatic extensions for payments due through Aug. 15.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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