Outgoing Bank of America (BAC) Chief Executive Ken Lewis pledged on Monday to loan an additional $5 billion to small businesses in 2010, after the top executives for the largest U.S. banks, from Goldman Sachs (GS), JP Morgan Chase, (JPM) Citigroup (C) and others, met with President Obama.
President Obama reiterated his call during a White House meeting for the nation’s largest banks to increase lending saying he wants them to help the economy after taxpayers helped them.
WaPo: “America’s banks received extraordinary assistance” from the government, Obama said at a press conference following a meeting with the heads of the largest banks. “Now that they’re back on their feet, we expect an extraordinary commitment from them to help rebuild our economy.”
Lewis promised his bank will make at least $5 billion in additional loans to small business next year.
Banks of America, one of the world’s largest financial institutions, has extended roughly $12 billion in credit to small businesses through the first nine months of 2009, the company said, and modified loans for 49,000 small-business clients in the same period. In addition, Bank of America originated more than $215 billion in commercial non-real estate loans to medium-sized companies during that period.
“Bank of America is determined to do our part to help the economy grow next year and reduce unemployment by making every good loan we can make,” Lewis said.