The fourth quarter of 2013 was a rough one for many of the country’s biggest banks, thanks to lingering litigation, the payouts for which took a bite out of the bottom line.
To be sure, some felt the bite more than others. Bank of America completed the fourth quarter of 2013 with a record net income of $3.4 billion, but also picked up the gold medal for paying the most in mortgage-related litigation expenses, according to HousingWire. Legal payouts hit $2.3 billion in the fourth quarter, up from $916 million in the same quarter of 2012.
Morgan Stanely came in second, with $1.2 billion set aside in “legal reserves for mortgage-related matters,” and JP Morgan had $1.1 billion in legal expenses, a chunk of which went to closing up the firm’s involvement with the Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme settlement.
Goldman Sachs rounded out the top four, setting aside $561 million to deal with the mortgage kerfuffle, up a whopping 155 percent from the $260 million the investment bank put towards such legal matters in the fourth quarter of 2012. [HousingWire] — Julie Strickland