On March 12, the Federal Reserve launched the Bank Term Funding Program (BTFP), a lending program for eligible depository institutions—banks, savings banks and credit unions—experiencing liquidity issues. The goals of the BTFP are to bolster institutions’ capacity to safeguard deposits and ensure the ongoing provision of credit to communities and the broader economy.
Use of the BTFP reduces the need for an institution to quickly sell securities, perhaps at a loss, in times of stress. As of April 5, outstanding loans through the program stood at $79 billion. BTFP usage is published weekly in the Board of Governors’ H.4.1 statistical release (“Factors Affecting Reserve Balances of Depository Institutions and Condition Statement of Federal Reserve Banks”).
Some of the BTFP’s features and requirements follow. More detailed information can be found in a list of frequently asked questions (PDF) prepared for program users.
- Eligible Borrowers—U.S. federally insured depositories and U.S. branches or agencies of foreign banks that are eligible for primary credit at the discount window. While the holding of a Federal Reserve master account is not required, borrowing institutions must at least have a correspondent relationship with an institution that does have a master account.
- Eligible Collateral—Direct obligations of certain U.S. government agencies, including the U.S. Department of the Treasury, government-sponsored enterprises such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks. In addition, mortgage-backed securities issued and/or fully guaranteed by Ginnie Mae, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are eligible.
- Loan Terms—Institutions may borrow up to the value of eligible collateral pledged. Collateral is valued at par, i.e., with no haircuts. Loans can be prepaid at any time without penalty. The rate is fixed for the life of the loan (up to one year) and is calculated by adding 10 basis points to the overnight index swap rate. The rate is published daily on the Discount Window website. Advances will be available until March 11, 2024, or longer if the program is extended.
This program will help eligible institutions ensure that they have sufficient cash on hand to meet depositors’ needs. Supervisors will view the use of the BTFP as prudent liquidity management.1 Information about borrowing institutions and the advances they take will remain confidential for a year after the program ends;2 as of now, that date would be March 11, 2025, one year after the program is scheduled to end.
Bankers are also encouraged to use the discount window as a complement to the BTFP. The programs share some characteristics but differ in other ways. The discount window accepts a wider range of collateral than the BTFP, for example, which may make it a better choice for some banks.
Detailed information on the BTFP can be found on the Discount Window website. There, bankers will also find a standard template to request funds and collateral pledging instructions. As with discount window loans, BTFP loans are issued by local Federal Reserve banks. Please reach out to your local Reserve Bank contact with questions or concerns. A list of contacts can also be found on the Discount Window website.
- From the Board of Governors FAQ (PDF), “The Board will not criticize eligible depository institutions for participating in the Program. The Board believes banks’ use of the Program can be part of sound liquidity management. The Board established the Program to make additional funding available to eligible depository institutions to help assure banks have the ability to meet the needs of all their depositors. The Program provides an additional source of liquidity against high-quality securities, which eliminates an institution’s need to quickly sell those securities in times of stress.”
- From the FAQ (PDF), “Under section 11(s) of the Federal Reserve Act, the Federal Reserve will publicly disclose information concerning the Program one year after it ends (the Program is currently scheduled to end on March 11, 2024). This disclosure will include names and identifying details of each participant that borrows from the Program, the amount borrowed, the interest rate or discount paid, and information concerning the types and amounts of collateral pledged or assets transferred in connection with participation in the Program.”