Coronavirus Response – Forum Member Actions
Updated April 7, 2020
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is an unprecedented challenge for the world and the global economy and the largest U.S. banks are committed to supporting our customers, clients and the nation.
The response to the pandemic requires a unified public-private effort and Financial Services Forum member banks have taken significant steps to support individuals, small businesses, and the broader economy through lending and other important services.
- Impacted customers are encouraged to reach out to their banks. Potential assistance includes possible fee waivers, access to hardship programs, and other help.
- Customers are encouraged to call the number on the back of their credit or debit cards or on their statements for assistance.
- Banks have also increased the hours that bankers and others are available who can provide assistance.
- Forum members are also taking steps to ensure branches, including ATMs, are cleaned regularly to help prevent the spread of the virus.
For Small Businesses
- Small business clients who are facing financial hardship also should reach out to their banks for assistance.
- Potential assistance includes fee waivers, after-hours support, and other aid.
- Forum members are helping ensure the well-being of their more than 750,000 employees.
- Employees are teleworking when possible and a number of institutions have created rotations for employees for those who need to be in the office.
JOINT FORUM MEMBER ACTIONS
Discount Window Funding
On March 16, Financial Services Forum members announced that all members are accessing funding from the discount window to reassure financial institutions of all sizes that they should use the facility to meet client liquidity needs during this difficult period.
While Forum member institutions individually have substantial liquidity and multiple sources of funding, they believe it is important to lead by demonstrating the value of the Federal Reserve’s discount window facility and to encourage its use by other financial institutions. Federal regulators have encouraged banks to use the discount window. Read More.
On March 15, the Financial Services Forum announced that its eight members would temporarily suspend share buybacks for the remaining period of the first quarter and the second quarter of 2020.
The decision on buybacks is consistent with our collective objective to use our significant capital and liquidity to provide maximum support to individuals, small businesses, and the broader economy through lending and other important services. Read More.
INDIVIDUAL MEMBER ACTIONS
Bank of America
Bank of America is providing assistance to clients in need and taking proactive steps to protect clients and teammates in Financial Centers. This includes enhanced cleaning procedures and other measures to limit the risk of exposure, based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Bank of America is offering assistance for clients impacted by coronavirus, including the following:
- Consumer and Small Business deposit accounts: clients can request refunds including overdraft fees, non-sufficient funds fees, and monthly maintenance fees.
- Consumer and Small Business credit cards: clients can request to defer payments, refunds on late fees.
- Small business loans: clients can request to defer payments, refunds on late fees.
- Auto loans: clients can request to defer payments, with payments added to the end of the loan.
- Mortgages and home equity: clients can request to defer payments, with payments added to the end of the loan.
- In all of these instances, there will be no negative credit bureau reporting for up-to-date clients.
- The bank has also paused foreclosure sales, evictions and repossessions.
The bank is also continuing to pay employees if they are out of work due to direct or indirect virus-related impacts.
Bank of America announced it will provide up to $250 million in capital to community development financial institutions (CDFIs) by funding loans through the newly established Paycheck Protection Program. In addition, Bank of America will provide up to $10 million in philanthropic grants specifically to help fund the operations of CDFIs.
Bank of America also announced it is committing $100 million to support local communities in need as the world faces unprecedented challenges from the coronavirus. The funds will help increase medical response capacity, address food insecurity, increase access to learning as a result of school closures, and provide support to the world’s most vulnerable populations. Read More
BNY Mellon stands shoulder-to-shoulder with governments, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and other public health organizations to mitigate the outbreak’s effects on the most vulnerable, and combat its impact on communities, markets and people around the world.
BNY Mellon’s top priority is the health and safety of employees and clients. A substantial portion of the global employee base is now working remotely, with the goal of retaining only essential in-office staff onsite to expand social distancing and help mitigate the risk of exposure. The firm remains operational and responsive to client needs during this challenging time.
BNY Mellon remains highly engaged with key regulators and industry peers to cooperate and coordinate on the new financial market programs recently announced.
BNY Mellon has made philanthropic commitments to the hardest-hit areas and the public health infrastructure in regions where employees live and work, including the Center for Disease Control, the International Medical Corps, and Save the Children, as well as local organizations that provide targeted first-line support. Furthermore, BNY Mellon matches donations for eligible employees who donate to approved agencies responding to the COVID-19 outbreak.
BNY Mellon supports employees with paid leave benefits and an Employee Assistance Program for all employees and their direct family members, including a 24/7 COVID-19 support line. BNY Mellon also recently enhanced U.S. healthcare coverage so that COVID-19 testing and related primary care will be provided without any employee out-of-pocket expense. Read More.
Citi is offering assistance to impacted customers in the U.S. through a range of measures, including fee waivers for Citibank customers, hardship programs, and additional small business support, such as extended banker availability. Citi is also continuing to pay employees whose hours are impacted by the pandemic.
“This is a rapidly evolving situation and we want our customers to know we are here to provide assistance should they need it,” said Anand Selva, CEO, Citi’s U.S. Consumer Bank.
Citibank’s individual and Small Business customers impacted by COVID-19 may be eligible for the following assistance:
- Retail Bank: Fee waivers on monthly service fees, safe deposit boxes, and non-Citi ATM usage fees; waived penalties for early CD withdrawal.
- Credit Cards: Fee waivers on late fees and deferral of minimum payments for two months. Accounts will be reported as current to the credit bureaus during the waiver period, unless the account was delinquent before the waiver period began.
- Small Business: Fee waivers on monthly service fees and remote deposit capture; waived penalties for early CD withdrawal; Bankers available after hours and on weekends for support. In addition, Citi is participating in the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program.
In addition, Citi has “always on” assistance programs for eligible credit card customers, including credit line increases and collection forbearance programs.
Citi will be providing more than 75,000 employees globally with a special compensation award to help ease the financial burden of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the United States, a $1,000 award will be provided to employees earning under $60,000 in annual base salary.
The Citi Foundation has announced it will provide $15 million to support COVID-19 global relief activities. This support will be distributed through the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, No Kid Hungry, and other international, country-specific relief organizations.
Customers impacted by the virus are encouraged to contact Citi’s 24/7 dedicated assistance line at the number on the back of their cards. Read More.
Goldman Sachs online bank, Marcus, and Apple credit card customers can take an extra month to make payments, with no penalty or additional interest, if they are financially stretched due to the coronavirus. Customers can access their accounts 24/7 at marcus.com or on the Marcus app.
Goldman Sachs has donated approximately 600,000 N95 masks to hospitals with 400,000 of those going to New York and New Jersey. With these updated numbers, the firm has donated the vast majority of the masks that they had in storage from previous epidemics.
Goldman Sachs intends to deliver $300 million through two separate initiatives to help small businesses and communities around the world navigate the current health and economic crisis.
- $275 million will create a Small Business Stimulus Package of emergency loans to small businesses across the country and grants to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs).
- $25 million will be devoted to supporting communities in most urgent need globally, with the firm contributing to match employee donations up to an additional $5 million.
Goldman Sachs is also offering 10 days of family leave to employees globally to care for family members, as needed, due to COVID-19 related illness or childcare needs, including homeschooling.
Marcus has extended its Disaster Relief Program (DRP) to assist customers that are unable to make a payment due to reduced income related to C-19 Coronavirus. Impacted customers may reach out to Marcus to request assistance. There is no fee to enroll in the program.
Marcus is also extending the DRP Program to credit card customers as well. Read More.
JPMorgan Chase customers who have been affected by the pandemic should call the number on the back of their credit or debit cards or on their statement to receive assistance. The bank has also ensured that branches, including ATM screens and keypads, are cleaned daily with EPA-approved disinfectants and have sanitizer on hand.
JPMorgan Chase is taking the following steps to best support their customers during the COVID-19 pandemic:
- Providing a 90-day grace period for mortgage and auto loan/lease payments and waiving any associated fees.
- Removing minimum payment requirements on credit cards and waiving associated late fees.
- Not reporting payment deferrals such as late payments to credit bureaus for up-to-date clients.
- Continuing to responsibly lend to qualified customers.
- Waiving or refunding some fees, including early withdrawal fees on CDs.
JPMorgan Chase is also working to prudently extend credit to businesses of all sizes for working capital and general corporate purposes, having extended $950 million in new loans to small businesses in two months time. The firm is currently waiving and refunding fees for those businesses in need and finding ways to help more small businesses through resources available at the Small Business Administration.
JPMorgan Chase continues to pay employees who are at home because they have had exposures to the virus or their health is higher risk. The firm is also providing paid medical leave to employees who are unwell. JPMorgan Chase has retained clinical staff internally to support their employees through this difficult time, whether it is fielding general inquiries related to COVID-19 or locating testing or other medical facilities.
All JPMorgan Chase employees are receiving five additional paid days off to help manage personal needs, which may include dependent care, child care or other issues. All branch employees are also being paid their regularly scheduled hours even if those hours are reduced on their branch is temporarily closed.
Additionally, JP Morgan Chase is making a special payment of up to $1,000 to help full- or part- time employees whose job requires them to continue working on site or are Consumer Banking branch-based employees, and to recognize their ongoing commitment to the bank’s customers, clients and communities.
JPMorgan Chase has also announced a $50 million philanthropic investment to help address immediate and long-term global impacts of COVID-19. These funds will support communities and people hit hardest by this public health crisis and will provide humanitarian relief as well as support for impacted small businesses.
“We’re doing all we can to make sure our branches are open, our bankers are there and our call centers are staffed,” JPMorgan Chase has told its customers. “You can count on us at times like this, especially if you need our help.” Read More.
Morgan Stanley has instituted expanded work-from-home policies for its global workforce. The bank is honoring payments to vendors with the expectation they continue to pay and support their employees.
Morgan Stanley has announced a $10 million cash commitment in aid to support Coronavirus relief efforts around the world. The aid will be distributed to a variety of relief organizations including Feeding America, the CDC Foundation, and the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Health Fund. Read More.
State Street – through its charitable foundation – is committed to working with local, national and global organizations who are on the front lines of the Covid-19 health crisis.
State Street Foundation has announced it will provide initial grants to the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, the Centers for Disease Control Foundation, and Give2Asia, as well as the Boston Resiliency Fund. State Street Foundation has also announced it will double match (2:1) employee charitable contributions to any of the above organizations, as well as to the International Red Cross, The Boston Foundation’s COVID-19 Response Fund, and the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley’s COVID-19 Family Support Fund.
State Street is also actively working with our community partners globally to determine their specific volunteer needs and to identify opportunities for “virtual volunteerism” for our employees. Moving ahead, State Street will be continuing to monitor the situation to determine the evolution of needs within our communities. Read More.
Wells Fargo is committed to helping customers experiencing hardships. Customers in need of assistance can speak with a trained specialist to discuss options available for their consumer lending, small business and deposit products.
Wells Fargo is currently providing assistance including fee waivers, payment deferrals, and other expanded assistance for credit card, auto, mortgage, small business and personal lending customers who contact the bank, and will continue to communicate with customers as the situation evolves.
Wells Fargo has a number of existing options available to help mortgage customers address short- or longer-term financial changes that may impact their ability to keep up with their monthly mortgage payments. Customers should contact Wells Fargo about their circumstances to identify the best way to help them. Wells Fargo also has temporarily stopped all foreclosure-related activity for loans held in the bank’s portfolio.
Wells Fargo is also encouraging customers to use its convenient mobile and online tools to deposit checks, pay bills, transfer money, set and receive alerts, and send and receive money through Zelle®.
In addition, the Wells Fargo Foundation announced up to $6.25 million in donations to support domestic and global response to the coronavirus and to aid public health relief efforts. The philanthropic funding includes $1 million for the National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Emergency Relief Fund and $250,000 to the International Medical Corps for their work in more than 30 countries. The company will also donate up to $5 million at the local level to help address community-specific needs in the coming months.
“We recognize and appreciate the role of front-line health care providers as they apply their expertise on this fast-moving issue and care for the well-being of our communities,” said Bill Daley, vice chairman of public affairs at Wells Fargo and chairman of the board of the Wells Fargo Foundation.
Wells Fargo has made several significant enhancements to its benefits and time away programs to provide additional support to all employees during this public health emergency, including benefit enhancements specifically for employees directly affected by coronavirus through illness or school closures.
In order to recognize the hard work of employees, Wells Fargo will make a special one-time cash award to approximately 170,000 U.S. and international employees in April who earn a base compensation of less than $100,000. Eligible full-time U.S. employees will receive $600 and eligible part-time U.S. employees will receive $300 (before taxes). For international employees, qualifications and award amounts will be tailored to local compensation and competitive practices.
As a way of recognizing the unique contribution of these employees on the front line, Wells Fargo will be making additional cash payments to employees whose roles require they come in to the office to serve customers or other employees. Employees working on the front lines in branches, contact centers, and other offices who earn less than $100,000 will receive $200 per pay period for five pay periods, starting with the April 17 pay period. For eligible international employees, payments and timeframes will vary.
Wells Fargo has also activated assistance for employees via its WE Care Fund, which provides grants to Wells Fargo colleagues who face a catastrophic disaster or financial hardship resulting from an event beyond their control. Read More.
FEDERAL ACTIONS & RESOURCES
Financial Services Forum members are in regular contact with federal and state regulators, which have encouraged banks to meet the financial needs of customers affected by the coronavirus. “The agencies recognize the potential impact of the coronavirus on the customers, members, and operations of many financial institutions and will provide appropriate regulatory assistance to affected institutions subject to their supervision,” the regulators said in a statement.
Other Federal Resources
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The CDC is the federal government’s primary source of health information related to COVID-19, along with resources for families, schools, businesses and others. Read More.
The Federal Reserve
The Federal Reserve has taken a series of actions in response to the COVID-19 outbreak and stated that it is prepared to use its full range of tools to support the flow of credit to households and businesses and thereby promote its maximum employment and price stability goals. Read More.
The Small Business Administration
The Small Business Administration will work directly with state Governors to provide targeted, low-interest loans to small businesses and non-profits that have been severely impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides small businesses with working capital loans of up to $2 million that can provide vital economic support to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing. Read More.
Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
The IRS has established a special section focused on steps to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus. Read More.
Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
Housing and Urban Development has announced a suspension in foreclosures and evictions for Federal Housing Administration-insured mortgages for single-family properties for the next 60 days. Read More.
Fannie Mae is providing assistance options for Homeowners Impacted by COVID-19. Homeowners can find out if they have a Fannie Mae-owned mortgage and access to the Disaster Response Network. Read More.
Freddie Mac is providing mortgage forbearance for up to 12 months; waiving assessments of penalties and late fees; suspending reporting to credit bureaus of delinquency related to forbearance; and offering loan modification options that lower payments or keep payments the same after the forbearance period. Read More.
Other Government Response Info
Federal, state, and local governments are working to limit the spread of COVID-19 in the U.S. and to develop effective treatments for it. Read More.