Large, diversified U.S. financial institutions make unique and vital contributions to the American economy. We support economic growth by lending to consumers, businesses, and other financial institutions, and foster deep and liquid capital markets that allow the U.S. government and private institutions to finance public spending and investment. Our financial institutions provide a wide range of products and services that supports the ability of consumers, governments, and businesses of all sizes to grow and create jobs in the United States.
We promote savings and investment through lending. Forum members hold more than $4 trillion in loans, accounting for 41.8 percent of total lending to businesses and households. Forum members provide nearly half of all consumer loans by banks in the United States. Consumer lending supports loans for a variety of household needs, such as the purchase of a new car or furnishing a new home.
We meet three-quarters of the bank funding needs of other financial institutions, supporting the needs of community banks, insurance companies and mortgage finance companies, for example, companies that then provide important services to businesses and households.
Our underwriting activities foster deep and liquid capital markets and support corporate investment in America. We underwrite nearly three-quarters of debt and equity transactions–such as initial public offerings–among large institutions in the United States, providing a critical service that that other U.S. institutions cannot offer. With nearly $150 billion in municipal securities holdings, we finance a significant portion of state and local government expenditures, such as hospitals, roads, bridges, and schools. We also finance a significant portion of federal government expenditures. Our holdings of municipal and U.S Treasury securities also foster liquid secondary markets, thus improving the ease and cost with which the U.S., state, and local governments can access capital markets and finance public spending and investment.
Additionally, our financial institutions employ more than 1 million people, and we provide a variety of benefits and opportunities to help our workers achieve their personal and professional goals.