BofA "Finds" Capital Calculation Math Error, Halts Capital Action Plan, $4 Billion Buyback

Tyler Durden's picture

Just weeks after the Fed signed off on CCAR and ackowledged how great the US banking system is, Bank of America (after being slapped with another $13bn RMBS suit demand) has ackowledged things are not quite as risy as they appeared...


So no buyback boost... no dividend boost... The question now is - how do we (or The Fed) trust any of the numbers?

Subsequent to the press release, the Corporation discovered an incorrect adjustment being applied in the determination of regulatory capital related to the treatment of the fair value option adjustment for structured notes assumed in the Merrill Lynch & Co, Inc. acquisition in 2009, resulting in an overstatement of regulatory capital amounts and ratios.




From the release:

Bank of America Corporation today announced a downward revision to the company’s previously disclosed regulatory capital amounts and ratios due to an incorrect adjustment related to the treatment of certain structured notes assumed in the Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. acquisition in 2009. The reduction in the regulatory capital amounts and ratios has no impact on the company’s historical consolidated financial statements or shareholders’ equity, which were properly stated in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America (GAAP).


On April 16, the company issued a press release announcing preliminary financial results for the quarter ended March 31, 2014. As part of such release, the company included estimated preliminary Basel 3 capital amounts and ratios as well as Basel 1 capital amounts and ratios for 2013. Subsequent to the press release, the company discovered an incorrect adjustment being applied in the determination of regulatory capital related to the application of the fair value option to certain legacy Merrill Lynch structured notes resulting in an overstatement of its regulatory capital amounts and ratios. The company correctly adjusted for the cumulative unrealized change on structured notes accounted for under the fair value option, but it incorrectly adjusted for cumulative realized losses on Merrill Lynch issued structured notes that had matured or were redeemed by the company subsequent to the date of the Merrill Lynch acquisition.


As a result, the company is making the following adjustments to the previously announced estimated preliminary capital ratios for the first quarter ended March 31, 2014: the estimated Basel 3 Standardized transition common equity tier 1 capital ratio was revised to 11.8 percent, down 5 basis points; the estimated tier 1 capital ratio was revised to 11.9 percent, down 21 basis points; the estimated total capital ratio was revised to 14.8 percent, down 21 basis points; and the estimated tier 1 leverage ratio was revised to 7.4 percent, down 12 basis points.


Although not required by GAAP, the company has in prior periods, including the first quarter of 2014, disclosed estimates for its Basel 3 fully phased-in common equity tier 1 ratios in quarterly earnings releases. On a fully phased-in basis, Bank of America estimates that for the first quarter ended March 31, 2014, the common equity tier 1 capital ratio under the Basel 3 Standardized approach decreased 27 basis points to 9.0 percent from the previously reported estimated ratio, and the estimate for the common equity tier 1 capital ratio under the Basel 3 Advanced approaches decreased 29 basis points to 9.6 percent from the previously reported estimated ratio. These ratios exceed the company’s estimated 2019 minimum common equity tier 1 ratio requirement, including buffers, of 8.5 percent.


* * *


Bank of America promptly notified the Federal Reserve Board (FRB) of the revisions and has been in close communication with the FRB regarding the effects of the revisions. The FRB has directed the company to resubmit its data templates and requested capital actions contained in the 2014 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR). As part of this process, Bank of America will engage a third party to review processes and the materials prior to resubmission.


At the FRB’s request, the company is suspending its previously announced 2014 capital actions, including the $4.0 billion common stock repurchase authorization and the planned increase in the quarterly common stock dividend from $0.01 per common share to $0.05 per share. Subject to completion of the third-party review and approval from the Bank of America Board of Directors, the company will expeditiously resubmit its data templates and requested capital actions in the 2014 CCAR plan for FRB approval. The company expects the requested capital actions to be contained in the revised CCAR submission will be less than the company’s previously announced 2014 capital actions.

The good news: at least Bank of America has no error in its $55.7 trillion in total derivative exposure notional:


And now, presenting... The Brian Moynihan Center for bankers who can't do math good and want to fudge other numbers good too.

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El Hosel's picture

Bofa Banksters Botched Balance Sheet Bad for Banking Business... Bitchez, Good thing they are Bankers, otherwise this would be a hard pill to swallow.

knukles's picture

Numbers don't add....
Regulators don't regulate...
Bankers don't bank...

What we have here is a failure to communicate.
Need moar propaganda...

Arius's picture


i have an account with them, but somehow am getting this funny feeling about BofA ... funny name to say the least .... could potential target ....


wondered where can one go?  HSBC perhaps safer?  any ideas?

GetZeeGold's picture



how do we (or The Fed) trust any of the numbers?


I don't trust jack about jack these days.

Headbanger's picture

It's all play money and they'll just get moar from the FED anyway.

So why give a crap about their numbers being right!!?

svayambhu108's picture

WTF, this things don't have internal conflicts, are they hollow on the inside ?

Or this kind of dissonance make some of their people jump for the nailgun.

bania's picture

The balance sheet has to be at least... three times bigger than this!

max2205's picture

It's not fraud if you admit it before they find it.


Janet to Brian...psst. ...there's a bust in your spreadsheet. ..your welcome

kaiserhoff's picture

Put spreads.  Heads you win, tails you win bigger.

It's the way of the Lloyd;)

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Safe banks are an illusion in a leveraged fiat world. At this point there are no safe or safer banks since the very foundation of the financial system is crumbling. I now return you to your scheduled programing already in progress.

Arius's picture

we have to use a bank though least i have to.

i have seen comments about community, union banks, but am not sure if anyone can open accounts with them ...previously, I was not as worried.


btw, that good be a good topic to explore on your blog ... people might be interested ....

thanks for your reply!

Bangin7GramRocks's picture

As long as they have whatthefuckever amount of derivatives, all the big banks are safe as can be. The central banks will have to coddle them and bail them out because the alternative is a worldwide financial collapse. Damn, it feels good to be a gangsta!

JRobby's picture

Safe if you have less than $250k. The printing press will replenish you.

What are they looking for with these silly capital requirements anyway? Solvency? As we careen toward Sept 2014 marking the 6th year of being "In-"


slyhill's picture

You STILL have an account with BofA and are now wondering if you should go to HSBC?

Oh, wait, sorry... missed that sarc tag.

kchrisc's picture

"Please walk quietly to the exists marked 'gold.' No running., walk calmly. Oh fuck it, RUNNNNNNN!"

BandGap's picture

I just get pissed when people are expected to swallow "math errors" as an explanation for a fuck up. Funny how these "math errors" are never a positive thing for a company. odd that they are usually exposed when the company is under scrutiny, too. The coincidence is killing me.


El Hosel's picture

When your mission is to beat by a penny.... on Billions of dollars of fraudulent transactions ..... regardless of what the actual numbers would be if marked to anything resembling reality, its not easy.

Amazing how "Beat by a Penny" comes up over and over again for all the corporate giants. I guess where there is a crooked balance sheet there is a way.

spastic_colon's picture

they should put B of A in one of the indexes..........oh wait

waterhorse's picture


Robo-signing = Forgery, fraud

Sloppy Paperwork = Forgery, fraud, uttering

Math Error = Control fraud

Stoploss's picture

Who said math doesn't have a sense of humor?


El Hosel's picture

When did "we" trust the numbers?

BandGap's picture

Nobody botched anything. The numbers saw the light.

Thieves, all of them.

MickV's picture

Uh... We don't?

kaiserhoff's picture

Translation into English:  Bofa's auditors wouldn't take the risk of signing off on this.  Expect more, not less.

Weather forecast:  Partly cloudy with occasional falling bankers.


Pickleton's picture

Weather forecast: Chance of banker suicide low today with 80% chance of auditors sprinkling from the sky.


I Write Code's picture

More toxic sludge from ML.

The auditors already have signed off on it three times, apparently, and more than likely with the knowledge or urging of the United Snakes Department of the so-called Treasury.

I'm sure this has all been on a yellow sticky note on some junior auditor's desk for for years.

The Merrill Lynch and Countrywide acquisitions were just bad, bad, bad decisions for BofA, but remember they were more or less coerced and even cosigned by Treasury and Fed when they were made, so I'm sure that ANYTHING that comes from those is heavily insured by, well, you and me!

101 years and counting's picture

my question is:  when did BAC know and then tell Warren so Warren could dump his shares before everyone else?

Dr. Engali's picture

Quick give that bank a bail out. we don't want these valuable contributors to society missing their bonuses. The poor bankers might starve, and we might not get trickle on.

fonzannoon's picture

You gotta hand it to BofA. They saw an error, and they came forward with it. That is what I like to see in an organization. Sure they may be punished in the meantime, but longer term, they are displaying the character that I look for. I think I speak for everyone on here when I say congratulations to BofA, and i'd like to start a fund to donate to their high up executives to help them through this difficult time.

kaiserhoff's picture

An electric cattle prod up the ass might help them move through this difficult time;)

AUD's picture

A dominatrix told me that's actually a BofA executive favourite at the Hellfire Club.

kaiserhoff's picture

That place is still there?  Sheeeit.  A Dude who might know once told me it's the kinkiest place on earth.

I'm sure Europe has better.., er, worse, WTF?

NotApplicable's picture

Channeling MDB?

I see that one person failed to note this.

fonzannoon's picture

I will check back in a few. My local BofA branch just opened and I am in a huge argument with the new accounts person. I am trying to open a CC and demanding they charge me 24% instead of the usual 20% but they are telling me they are not sure how to facilitate it.

MFL8240's picture

A must read for all who think this game of chicken will work for the US.

zipit's picture

The game of "slap the Russian bear."

TideFighter's picture

Bank Bear of Stearns America-This pig shoulda been bacon a long, long time ago. 

A_Nejad's picture

Not unless you like kosher bacon..

SlipStitchPass's picture

Not sure why anyone would even go into Skank-of-America? I live in a small city, all of the banks are open and friendly. You go into bankl of America and they are dirty, old, understaffed, and they have a 3 inch wall of bullet proff glass between you and the teller with some futuristic camera devive starring you in the face.

All of their Teir1 Capital pledged as collateral against their derivative bets? TBTF at its finest.

LawsofPhysics's picture

I often wonder when the average small business will also get to use mark to fantasy accounting like these asshats.

roll the mother fucking guillotines...

nothing changes otherwise.

Fix-ItSilly's picture

are you kidding? Unlike banks, the average small business would have to pay real taxes on fantasy profits!

youngman's picture

Dont worry..all the banker bonuses will be calculated on the old can still buy that house in the Hamptons...

Dollar Bill Hiccup's picture

Par for the crooked course.

How long were they waiting to fess up to this?

Who gave them the green light?

This is a utility company now, after all.

FreeNewEnergy's picture

Sorry, Dollar Bill, but, calling BAC a utility is like calling Hillary a lovely woman. Utilities provide reasonable service and issue fairly good dividends.

Hillary... um, Bill went looking elsewhere... more than once.

Seize Mars's picture

Really? Is that the defining aspect of a utility?
Where I live, comparing the electric company to Bank of America would be an insult. To BAC, that is.

MFL8240's picture

No problem, fire half the staff and raise the bonuses for the CEO.  It was the fault of the tellers, not the accounting and corporate offices!!  This way they can send out a made up report about the future earnings. Reminiscent of 2008!

Kayman's picture

Press Release

   The SEC has just announced a new, tougher requirement for all the TBTF banks. Future financial statements will be required to be written in pencil so "adjustments" can be completed on a more expedited basis.

waterhorse's picture

It's all Linda Green's fault.  That bitch!

FreeNewEnergy's picture

Not to worry, Dick Bove will appear shortly on CNBC and explain why bank stocks should be in everybody's portfolios.

Afterwards, Bove will attempt to take a dump in the CNBC lavatory, only to fail for the 345th time, remaining utterly constipated, or, in Seinfeld-speak, "backed-up."

Forlorn, Bove will re-read the words he wrote on the bathroom wall many years ago:

"Here I sit, broken-hearted,

Came to shit, but only farted."