2014 was a big year for lending, as loan balances increased last year by $151.7b which was more than 2010 and 2011 combined. This has lead to a fourth quarter profit of $40.4b for banks. The most profitable 3-month period in 23 years. However, while banks have been aggressive in increasing loan issuance, they have socked away an additional $60b in treasuries and $19b in cash during the quarter. This is most likely due to regulation keeping financial institutions away from riskier assets.