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Bank Rating

Bank Rating

What Is a Bank Rating?

The term bank rating alludes to a letter grade or mathematical positioning assigned to certain financial institutions by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and credit rating agencies. Bank ratings are given to banks and other thrift institutions. Grades are assigned to furnish the public with information about an association's safety and adequacy. They additionally assist with banking leaders distinguish issues inside their institution, if any, that should be addressed. Numerous agencies and companies utilize a proprietary formula to determine ratings while others utilize the CAMELS system to evaluate these financial institutions.

Figuring out Bank Ratings

Regulatory and credit rating agencies assign financial institutions bank ratings to alert the public about the safety and sufficiency of a financial institution. These grades are issued by regulatory bodies, like the FDIC, and credit rating agencies like Standard and Poor's (S&P), Moody's, and Fitch. Ratings are refreshed consistently by bank supervisors, ordinarily every quarter.

Ratings give consumers a knowledge into the wellbeing and stability of financial institutions, like banks and other thrift institutions. These rankings are likewise given to the bank's management team and its board to address any issues, if any. Grades depend on a series of factors, including the amount of capital, liquidity, asset quality, and its management.

Every agency utilizes its own method of working out ratings. For example, government regulators assign ratings in view of the CAMELS system, which represents capital adequacy, asset quality, management, earnings, liquidity, and sensitivity. The system utilizes a scale of 1 to 5, where:

  • 1 is the best rating conceivable while 5 is awful
  • ratings of 1 and 2 are given to financial institutions that are in the best fundamental condition
  • institutions with a 3 might have a few issues that are a reason for concern
  • 4 or 5 shows serious issues that require immediate action or careful checking

A rating of 5 is given to an institution with a high likelihood of failure inside the next 12 months.

A few agencies utilize an alternate system and may keep their rating systems confidential. That is the reason private bank-rating companies likewise utilize proprietary formulas that repeat the information. For example, Fitch rates banks with letters. It assigned the Bank of America an A+/F1 rating in April 2020, which it considers an investment grade bank with high-quality assets that meet its financial obligations.

Since no rating service is indistinguishable, investors and clients ought to counsel numerous ratings while breaking down their financial institutions.

Special Considerations

As stated above, numerous agencies use CAMELS or comparative criteria to rate banks. The following are a couple of the things that agencies search for when they utilize this system.

An Is for Asset Quality

This could involve a survey or evaluation of credit risk associated with a bank's interest-bearing assets, like loans. Rating organizations may likewise take a gander at whether a bank's portfolio is fittingly diversified. This might allude to policies that are in place to limit credit risk and the effectiveness of operations.

M Is for Management

By exploring the management team, an agency needs to guarantee that the bank's leaders grasp the bearing of the institution and have specific plans to push ahead in a given regulatory environment. Picturing what is conceivable, setting a bank in setting with industry trends, and taking risks to develop the business are completely required of strong leaders.

E Is for Earnings

Bank financial statements are frequently more diligently to interpret than different companies, given their distinct business models. Banks take deposits from savers and pay interest on a portion of these accounts.

To generate revenues, they will pivot these funds to borrowers as loans and receive interest on them. Their profits are derived from the spread between the rate they pay for funds and the rate they receive from borrowers.


  • The public can involve these ratings as advisers for determine the safety and adequacy of certain financial institutions.
  • A bank rating is a letter grade or mathematical positioning given to banks and other thrift institutions.
  • Ratings are assigned by the FDIC and other private companies.
  • Ratings depend on factors like a bank's capital and the quality of its assets.