Blog Post Test 2

Blog Post Test 2

Bank of America said Friday it is now capable of accepting online applications for the government’s $350 billion small business relief program, becoming the first major bank to do so.

As of mid-morning New York time, none of the websites of the three other big U.S. banks — JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo or Citigroup — were accepting applications for the program, which was supposed to go live shortly after midnight. In fact, Wells Fargo announced that it will be unable to accept applications on Friday.

Bank of America’s portal went live at about 9 am ET Friday.

The U.S. government has asked banks to help it dole out at least $350 billion in loans to small businesses, part of the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill signed last week. But banks and industry groups have complained that they lacked the guidance to get online systems up and running until just hours before the deadline. That guidance was finally issued by the Treasury Department around 7 p.m. Thursday, leaving banks scrambling to get their systems to accept loan applications.