Amid crisis, Biden tells Americans ‘banking system is safe’


(WASHINGTON) — President Joe Biden spoke out Monday morning in an effort to reassure Americans there is no need for panic after federal agencies stepped in following the failures of two big banks over the weekend.

“Americans can rest assured that our banking system is safe. Your deposits are safe. Let me also assure you, we will not stop at this. We’ll do whatever is needed,” Biden said from the White House.

The federal government said Sunday that all depositors at Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank will be protected and be able to get access to their money Monday morning, with the funds coming from special fund set up by the nation’s banks and from the sale of the banks’ assets, not from taxpayers.

“No losses will be borne by the taxpayers,” Biden repeated Monday.

“Because of the actions that our regulators already taken, every American should feel confident that their deposits will be there if and when they need them,” he continued. “Second, the management of these banks will be fired. If the bank is taken over by FDIC, the people running the bank should not work there anymore.”

“Third, investors in the banks will not be protected. They knowingly took a risk, and when the risk didn’t pay off, investors lose their money. That’s how capitalism works. And fourth, are important questions of how these banks got into the circumstance in the first place. We must get the full accounting of what happened and why those responsible can be held accountable,” he said.

Biden also pledged that he would take action to “reduce the risks of this happening again,” pointing the finger at the Trump administration for, according to Biden, rolling back some of the requirements the Obama administration put in place during their administration.

“Unfortunately, the last administration rolled back some of these requirements. I’m going to ask Congress and the banking regulators to strength the rules for banks, to make it less likely this kind of bank failure would happen again, and to protect American jobs and small businesses,” Biden said.

His comments echoed what he said in a statement Sunday, “I am pleased that they reached a prompt solution that protects American workers and small businesses, and keeps our financial system safe. The solution also ensures that taxpayer dollars are not put at risk.”

“The American people and American businesses can have confidence that their bank deposits will be there when they need them. I am firmly committed to holding those responsible for this mess fully accountable and to continuing our efforts to strengthen oversight and regulation of larger banks so that we are not in this position again,” he said.

His comments came just before the U.S. markets and banks open and before he heads on a previously scheduled trip to California. He did not take any questions.

ABC News’ Molly Nagle contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.