Additional legal costs for big banks could top $100 billion

The following article is brought to you by Chris Isidore at

U.S. banks might still be on the hook for more than $100 billion in additional fines and legal costs over bad mortgage loans sold during the financial crisis, according to a new estimate from credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s.

But despite that massive cost, which would dwarf the fines and costs they have faced to date, S&P believes the banks have the financial wherewithal to pay out those claims. It does not anticipate downgrading the credit ratings for the banks with the largest exposure.

The cost estimate for the legal expenses ranges from $55 billion to $105 billion, according to the note. But S&P admits it made the estimate using a “significant amount of simplifying assumptions,” and that the final cost could fall either below or above that range.

The note published Tuesday estimates that the major banks — Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo — together are already on the hook for more than $45 billion of payouts since 2009, and have incurred legal expenses of $50 billion.

(CHASEHOMEFINANCESUX RESPONSE: When Is The People; The Home Owner, The Investor, Or The Tax Payer, Who Were Actually Robbed, Going To See Any Justice!?!?! Or Is The Government & The Banks Just Going To Continue To Swap Money Among Themselves!?!?!)

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