CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The improvement in consumer credit is allowing banks to lower loss provisions and draw down reserves.

A review by SNL Financial of second quarter 2012 data for the 20 largest public banks and thrifts and all U.S. commercial banks found most of the banks believe the worst is behind them. But SNL Financial said in its analysis that it is too soon to say the downward trend will continue or even level off.

Each of the nation’s five biggest banks – JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp., Citigroup Inc., Wells Fargo & Co. and U.S. Bancorp – reported lower net charge-offs in the latest completed quarter, allowing them to bring down provisions and reserves, an SNL Financial analysis found. Sixteen of the nation’s 20 largest banks reported lower net charge-offs. Of those 20 companies, 15 released reserves, and 11 of them lowered provisions.


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