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Investments / The Ticker

Big banks buy $14 billion in Ginnie Mae bonds

Other bond purchases flat in fourth quarter

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Analysts at Barclays crammed through the latest numbers from the National Information Center and noted that the 50 largest banks in the nation added $14 billion more of Ginnie Mae bond in the fourth quarter.

"Although the data are not as comprehensive as the Quarterly Banking Profile (which also includes savings institutions), soon to be released by the FDIC, they provide a good early estimate of changes in bank assets and liabilities," write analysts Lokesh Chandra and Nicholas Strand.

Everything else remains fairly balanced when compared to bond-purchase activity in the third quarter.

"Wells Fargo had the largest increase in [Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac] MBS holdings, adding $6.1 billion, while Bank of America and Citigroup reduced their holdings by $4.8 billion and $2 billion, respectively," they said.

"Holdings of non-agency MBS of the top 50 banks decreased by $4.0 billion, while CMBS holdings rose by $6.3 billion," the Barclays analysts note.  "Treasury holdings increased by $32.5 billion, while agency debt holdings were flat q/q. "

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