Categories Earnings Call Transcripts, Finance

Regions Financial Corporation (RF) Q4 2021 Earnings Call Transcript

RF Earnings Call - Final Transcript

Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE:RF) Q4 2021 Earnings Call dated Jan. 20, 2022.

Corporate Participants:

Dana Nolan — Executive Vice President & Head of Investor Relations

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Analysts:

Erika Najarian — UBS — Analyst

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

John Pancari — Evercore ISI — Analyst

Bill Carcache — Wolfe Research — Analyst

Ebrahim Poonawala — Bank Of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Ken Usdin — Jefferies — Analyst

Gerard Cassidy — RBC Capital Markets — Analyst

Matt O’Connor — Deutsche Bank — Analyst

Stephen Scouten — Piper Sandler — Analyst

Christopher Spahr — Wells Fargo — Analyst

Vivek Juneja — JPMorgan — Analyst

Jennifer Demba — Truist Securities — Analyst

Presentation:

Operator

Good morning and welcome to Regions Financial Corporation’s Quarterly Earnings Call. My name is Natalia and I will be your operator for today’s call. [Operator Instructions].

I will now turn the call over to Dana Nolan to begin.

Dana Nolan — Executive Vice President & Head of Investor Relations

Thank you, Natalia. Welcome to Regions fourth quarter 2021 earnings call. John and David will provide high level commentary regarding the quarter. Earnings documents, which include our forward-looking statement disclaimer and non-GAAP information are available in the Investor Relations section on our website. These disclosures cover our presentation materials, prepared comments and Q&A.

I’ll now turn the call over to John.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Thank you, Dana and good morning everyone. We appreciate you joining our call today. We’re very pleased with our fourth quarter and full year results. We achieved a great deal despite a challenging interest rate, and operating environment. Earlier this morning, we reported full year earnings of $2.4 billion and record pre-tax pre-provision income of $2.7 billion. Despite continued economic uncertainty, we remain focused on what we can control, and our efforts are paying off. We grew consumer checking accounts by 3% and small-business accounts by 5%.

Notably, our 2021 net retail account growth exceeds the previous three years combined and represents an annual growth rate that is 3 times higher than pre-pandemic levels. We increased new corporate banking group loan production by approximately 30% and generated record capital markets revenue. Through our enhanced risk management framework, we delivered our lowest annual net charge-off ratio since 2006. We made investments in key talent in revenue facing associates to support strategic growth initiatives.

We continue to grow and diversify our revenue through our acquisitions of EnerBank, Sabal Capital Partners and Clearsight Advisors. We successfully executed our LIBOR transition program to ensure our clients we’re ready to move to alternative reference rates. We continue to focus on making banking easier through investments in target markets, technology and digital capabilities. We surpassed our two-year $12 million commitment to advance programs and initiatives that promote racial equity and economic empowerment for communities of color.

Before closing, we’re extremely proud of our achievements in 2021, but none of these would have been possible without the hard work and dedication of our nearly 20,000 associates. The past year posed unique challenges as we continue to transition to our new normal, both on a personal and professional level. Despite continued uncertainty, our associates remain steadfast. They continue to bring their best work every day providing best-in-class customer service, successfully executing our strategic plan and maintaining strong risk management practices, all of which contributed to our success.

In 2022 and beyond, we will continue to focus on growing our business by making investments in areas that allow us to make banking easier for our customers, all while continuing to provide our associates with the tools they need to be successful. We will make incremental adjustments to our business by leaning into our strengths and investing in areas where we believe we can consistently win over time. As announced earlier this week, a key priority in 2022 will be additional comprehensive changes to our NSF and overdraft policies, which are detailed in the appendix of our presentation.

These changes represent a natural extension of our commitment to making banking easier for our customers and complement the enhanced alerts, time order posting process as well as our bank loan certified checking product we launched last year. It’s important to note that the financial impact of these enhancements, have been fully incorporated in our total revenue expectation for 2022. Again, we’re pleased with our results and have great momentum as we head into 2022.

Now, Dave will provide you with some select highlights regarding the quarter.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Thank you, John. Let’s start with the balance sheet. Including the impact of acquired loans from the EnerBank transaction, adjusted average and ending loans grew 6% and 7% respectively during the quarter. Although business loans continue to be impacted by excess liquidity, pipelines have surpassed pre-pandemic levels. And encouragingly we experienced a 240 basis point increase in line utilization rates during the fourth quarter.

In addition, production remained strong with a line of credit commitments increasing $4.7 billion year-over-year. Consumer loans reflected the addition of $3 billion of acquired EnerBank loans as well as another strong quarter of mortgage production, accompanied by modest growth in credit card. Looking forward, we expect full-year 2022 reported average loan balances to grow 4% to 5% compared to 2021.

Let’s turn to deposits. Although, the pace of deposit growth has slowed, balances continue to increase this quarter to new record levels. The increase includes impact of EnerBank deposits acquired during the fourth quarter as well as continued growth in new accounts and account balances. We are continuing to analyze our deposit base and pandemic related deposit inflow characteristics in order to predict future deposit behavior. Based on this analysis, we currently believe approximately 35% or $12 billion to $14 billion of deposit increases can be used to support longer term asset growth through the rate cycle.

Additional portions of the deposit increases could persist on the balance sheet where it likely to be more rate sensitive especially later in the Fed cycle. While we expect a portion of the surge deposits to be rate sensitive, you will recall that the granular nature and generally rate insensitive construct of our overall deposit base represent significant upside for us when rates do begin to increase.

Let’s shift to net interest income and margin. Net interest income increased 6% versus the prior quarter, driven primarily from our EnerBank acquisition, favorable PPP income and organic balance sheet growth. Net interest income from PPP loans increased $8 million from the prior quarter, but will be less of a contributor going forward. Approximately 80% of estimated PPP fees have been recognized. Cash averaged $26 billion during the quarter, and when combined with PPP, reduced fourth quarter’s reported margin by 51 basis points.

Our adjusted margin was 3.34%, modestly higher versus the third quarter. Excluding the impact of a large third quarter loan interest recovery, core net interest income was mostly stable as loan growth offset impacts from the low interest rate environment. Similar to prior quarters, net interest income was reduced by lower reinvestment yields on the fixed rate loans and securities. These impacts are expected to be more neutral to positive going forward. The hedging program contributed meaningfully to net interest income in the fourth quarter. The cumulative value created from our hedging program is approximately $1.5 billion. Roughly 90% of that amount has either been recognized or is locked in the future earnings from hedge terminations.

Excluding PPP, net interest income is expected to grow modestly in the first quarter aided by strong fourth quarter ending loan growth as well as continued loan growth in the first quarter, partially offset by day count. Regions’ balance sheet is positioned to benefit meaningfully from higher interest rates. Over the first 100 basis points of rate tightening, each 25 basis point increase in the federal funds rate is projected to add between $60 million and $80 million over a full 12-month period. This includes recent hedging changes and it’s supported by a large proportion of stable deposit funding and a significant amount of earning assets held in cash when compared to the industry.

Importantly, we continue to shorten the maturity profile of our hedges in the fourth quarter. Hedging changes to date support increasing net interest income exposure to rising rates, positioning us well for higher rates in 2022 and beyond. In summary, interest income is poised for growth in 2022 through balance sheet growth and a higher yield curve in an expanding economy.

Now let’s take a look at fee revenue and expense. Adjusted non-interest income decreased 5% from the prior quarter primarily due to elevated other non-interest income in the third quarter that did not repeat in the fourth quarter. Organic growth and the integration of Sabal Capital Partners and Clearsight Advisors will drive growth in capital markets revenue in 2022. Going forward, we expect capital markets to generate quarterly revenue of $90 million to $110 million excluding the impact of CVA and DVA. Mortgage income remained relatively stable during the quarter.

And while we don’t anticipate replicating this year’s performance in 2022, mortgage is expected to remain a key contributor to fee revenue, particularly as the purchase market in our footprint remains very strong. Wealth management income increased 5%, driven by stronger sales and market value impacts and is expected to grow incrementally in 2022. Seasonality drove an increase in service charges compared to the prior quarter. Looking ahead, as announced yesterday, we are making changes to our NSF and overdraft practices, which along with previously implemented changes will further reduce these fees.

NSF and overdraft fees make up approximately 50% of our service charge line item. These changes will be implemented throughout 2022 but once fully rolled out together with our previous changes implemented last year, we expect the annual impact to result in 20% to 30% lower service charges revenue versus 2019. Based on our expectations around the implementation timeline, we estimate $50 million to $70 million will be reflected in 2022 results. NSF and overdraft revenue has declined substantially over the last decade and once fully implemented, we expect the annual contribution from these fees will be approximately 50% lower than 2011 levels.

Since 2011, NSF and overdraft revenue has decreased approximately $175 million and debit interchange legislation reduced card and ATM fees, another $180 million. We have successfully offset these declines through expanded and diversified fee-based services and as a result, total non-interest income increased approximately $400 million over this same time period. Through our ongoing investments in capabilities and services, we will continue to grow and diversify revenue to overcome the impact of these new policy changes. We expect 2022 adjusted total revenue to be up 3.5% to 4.5% compared to the prior year, driven primarily by growth in net interest income. This growth includes the impact of lower PPP related revenue and the anticipated impact of NSF and overdraft changes.

Let’s move on to non-interest expense. Adjusted non-interest expenses increased 5% in the quarter. Salaries and benefits increased 4% primarily due to higher incentive compensation. Base salaries also increased as we added approximately 660 new associates primarily as a result of acquisitions that closed this quarter. The increased head count also reflects key hires to support strategic initiatives within other revenue producing businesses. We have experienced some inflationary pressures already and expect certain of those to persist in 2022. If you exclude variable based and incentive compensation associated with better than expected fee income and credit performance as well as expenses related to our fourth quarter acquisitions, our 2021 adjusted core expenses remained relatively stable compared to the prior year.

We will continue to prudently manage expenses while investing in technology, products and people to grow our business. As a result, our core expense base will grow. We expect 2022 adjusted non-interest expenses to be up 3% to 4% compared to 2021. Importantly, this includes the full year impact of recent acquisitions as well as anticipated inflationary impacts. Despite these impacts, we remain committed to generating positive adjusted operating leverage in 2022. Overall, credit performance remained strong. Annualized net charge-offs increased 6 basis points from the third quarter’s record low to 20 basis points, driven in part by the addition of EnerBank in the fourth quarter.

Full year net charge-offs totaled 24 basis points, the lowest level on record since 2006. Nonperforming loans continue to improve during the quarter and are now below pre-pandemic levels at just 51 basis points of total loans. Our allowance for credit losses remained relatively stable at 1.79% of total loans, while the allowance as a percentage of non-performing loans increased 66 percentage points to 349%. We expect credit losses to slowly begin to normalize in the back half of 2022 and currently expect full year net charge-offs to be in the 25 basis point to 35 basis point range.

With respect to capital, our common equity Tier 1 ratio decreased approximately 130 basis points to an estimated 9.5% this quarter. During the fourth quarter, we closed on three acquisitions, which combined, absorbed approximately $1.3 billion of capital. Additionally, we repurchased $300 million of common stock during the quarter. We expect to maintain our common equity Tier 1 ratio near the midpoint of our 9.25% to 9.75% operating range.

So wrapping up on the next slide are our 2022 expectations, which we’ve already addressed. In closing, the momentum we experienced in the fourth quarter positions us well for growth in 2022 as the economic recovery continues. Pre-tax pre-provision income remained strong. Expenses are well controlled, credit risk is relatively benign, capital and liquidity are solid and we’re optimistic about the pace of the economic recovery in our markets.

With that, we’re happy to take your questions.

Questions and Answers:

Operator

Thank you. The floor is now open for questions. [Operator Instructions]. Your first question is from the line of Erika Najarian with UBS.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Erika.

Erika Najarian — UBS — Analyst

Hi, good morning. So just going to — actually didn’t expect to ask this question. But the feedback that I got from investors in terms of the performance today, obviously your outlook is quite upbeat. Is that the tangible book dilution from the deals that you announce are rather closed in the fourth quarter surprised? And David, I’m wondering if you could share with us sort of the earn back period you expect for these deals on tangible book value well?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, we look at several factors not just tangible book value, we look at diversification of revenue, we look at return on investment because when you — the alternative is buying your stock back, which also has a reduction in the tangible book value. So you’re trying to look at the trade-off between how you put your capital to work. And frankly I can’t even remember what the payback was. If we were looking at a bank acquisition, that’s a little different where we would expect a payback period of three years or less.

But in this case, we’re looking at diversification and being able to grow and the return on that investment is higher than the return we would have had, if we were buying our shares back.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Betsy Graseck with Morgan Stanley.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

Hi. Good morning.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Betsy.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

Couple of questions. First on the announcement that you made yesterday on the changes to the overdraft insufficient funds fees. I know you sized it for 2022. Could you give us a sense as to if that were to go in full year, full on, what that level would be? Because, obviously, as we think into ’23, need to understand how you’re thinking about an annualized impact would be looking like.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

So the guidance we provided, Betsy, is if you go back to 2019, take total service charge revenue, the impact is going to be somewhere between 20% and 30% of total service charge revenue based on 2019 revenue once all the changes are implemented and annualized.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

And that includes all the things we already have done to. So it’s a cumulative number. So if you go back to that, you can — you could calculate — and round numbers, we’ll be half — we’re going to have half to maybe slightly more than that done in 2022. And so in double at 4 [Phonetic] close a proximity of what the total would be.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

And when you say the service charges from 2019, you’re talking about the service charges from 2019 in your income statement, not what shows up as regulatory like overdraft [Speech Overlap] for the filing?

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

That’s correct.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

Okay.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

And we think about it that way, because — I mean ultimately and all these fees are associated with the consumer business. And as we think about how we overcome that loss of revenue, it is through growth in consumer checking accounts, additional activity, debit card usage, debit card fees, other things that come with that. And as David has pointed out earlier, if you go back to 2010, 2011 timeframe and come forward, we’ve been able to significantly grow non — revenue while overcoming the loss of revenue associated with Reg E and other changes. We expect the same will be true as we look forward relative to the change we’re making here.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

And Betsy, just to help you out a little. If you go into our public filings in our supplement, 2019, our service charge number was $729 million. You talk that number.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

Right, right. Okay. I was just going to confirm that. All right, great. Thank you. And then follow-up question here, just on how you’re thinking about the Sabal acquisition and how that’s going to feed into not only the income statement, I heard you talk about, it’s in the capital markets revenue line. But maybe help us understand, is there any balance sheet impact here and the expectation that you have to grow this business from where it is today?

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Yes. So I would say the balance sheet impact will be modest, we’ll have an opportunity to develop relationships that might lead to are providing credit to customers and/or opening deposit relationships. We expect that to be true for sure. The primary benefit we derive from Sabal is they — capabilities we have — permanent placement capabilities that we ultimately end up with, I think we are one of four or five banks in the country that will have a complete array of real estate permanent placement products, whether it’d be a Fannie license, Freddie licenses for large and small dollar, CMBS capabilities.

We can bank our real estate customers’ needs across the spectrum. And as we transition from the great recession to today, we’ve built I think a really solid real estate business, real estate permanent placement revenue in 2021 will exceed $60 million, that’s from 0 in 2014, effectively. So we’ve been building that business around regional and national real estate developers, really strong balance sheets, good liquidity and access to capital, the portfolios performed very, very well and we think this gives us an opportunity to extend those relationships and drive additional profitability.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

And there’s been some pretty recently some significant uptick in that demand for that product, right?

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Yes. And again I think if you just look at the multifamily market and it’s awfully good and those developers who like to buy and hold — build and hold, one access to both the Fannie products and the Freddie products from time to time. And again found that to be a great source of revenue and a wonderful way to build stronger, deeper relationships with that customer segment.

Betsy Graseck — Morgan Stanley — Analyst

Thank you.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of John Pancari with Evercore ISI.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, John.

John Pancari — Evercore ISI — Analyst

Good morning. On the loan growth front, want to see if you can maybe give us little more color on the 4% to 5% growth expectation we have for the year. Maybe if you can unpack it by giving us a little bit of color on the growth you expect for commercial and CRE and consumer and how that could play out for the year. Thanks.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes, John, it’s David. So, first thing we have to overcome, it depends on if you’re looking at on the average, which is where the 4% to 5%. First thing you have to do is overcome PPP average, which is about $2.7 billion. So put that and you model. Then if you look at areas where we can grow, clearly we’re going to get benefit off EnerBank having a whole year of EnerBank along with its growth that we expect. And so that’s a big driver of our averaging. Mortgage ought to have a — may not have as much production as we have in ’21 for ’22, but we still believe we will grow the balance sheet quite nicely there.

We expect credit card to continue to grow. And then on commercial, even after you consider overcoming the PPP run off on average at 2.7%, we think we can still grow that on top of it. As we look at the industries that we were particularly strong in at ’21 in the commercial space, financial services, healthcare, transportation, our asset-based lending, homebuilder and to a lesser degree, technology. Those are areas that we did see growth in, quite nice growth and expect to continue into 2022. And it’s been geographically diverse as well.

John Pancari — Evercore ISI — Analyst

Right. Okay. All right, thanks. And then separately, on the operating leverage expectation based upon your guidance, you’re looking for about 50 basis point positive operating leverage. Could you just talk us about how — if Fed hikes maybe proved to be less than expected, is that 50 basis points operating leverage still attainable? Do you still have levers to pull to be basically generate that despite, I mean, moved by the Fed?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, it certainly makes it harder, but as we’ve always said, our goal is to generate positive operating leverage over time. And if our revenue growth in there, then we double down on expense management. And we actually didn’t get there this year, nor did anybody else that I’m aware of. But we believe there is a reasonable path to that and that’s why we gave you the guidance. It showed you that roughly 50 basis points or more. And we have things we can do during the year that can help us get there, but, yes, rates not coming in at the pace we think or as many of you think will put pressure on that calculation. But we wouldn’t give up on it, just because of that.

John Pancari — Evercore ISI — Analyst

Got it. All right, thanks for taking my question.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Bill Carcache with Wolfe Research.

Bill Carcache — Wolfe Research — Analyst

Thank you. Good morning. Following-up on the commentary around the positive operating leverage. I was hoping you could frame a little bit more how much variability there is around that 3% to 4% increase that you have in your outlook for expenses? As those rate hikes begin to flow through, the forward curve reflects four hikes next year, but some are expecting more than that. So, how does the number of hikes, I guess, to the extent that we get more influence the expense line? And does that 3% to 4% outlook hold?

And on top of that, it would be great if you could also discuss your confidence level and being able to control the expense base such that you continue — do you still achieve that positive operating leverage even under different inflation scenarios?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, yes, lot up there. So, let me see if I can help you out. So, on the expense side of 3% to 4%, a large portion of that, substantial portion of that related to the acquisitions that we had. So, we closed on three deals in the fourth quarter. One of them right at the end of the year. So we’ll have a full-year run rate on all of those coming through, and that’s the biggest single driver of the 3% to 4%.

If you go back and look at our compound annual growth rate on expense management, we’ve actually done a pretty good job of controlling our expenses. And we don’t do that in just one area, but it’s ours and benefits and furniture, fixtures and equipment, occupancy and vendor spend, all those things we are all over. And John has his — our continuous improvement programs still going where we are looking to improve processes each and every day, leveraging technology to help us control our expense load.

So I think in terms of the revenue side, we have 4 baked into our guidance that we just gave you, 4 25 basis points moves each quarter. So on average you get 2 during the year and it depends on where we get 25, will be more than that, will be more than 4 or less than 4. I mean you have to — we’ve told you in our guidance that each 25 basis point to $60 million to $80 million for. So you can with your model and kind of work with that. But back to the question earlier, I think from John Pancari in terms of operating leverage, we are committed to generating positive operating leverage over time. And when things get more challenging, we’ll do what we can to manage expenses. So I’ll leave it at that.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Ebrahim Poonawala with Bank of America.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Ebrahim.

Ebrahim Poonawala — Bank Of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Good morning. I guess one just question, follow-up on the overdraft. It’s been a big overhang on the stock. And I get your guidance around the impact this year, David. But just talk to us downside risk, the industry seems to be moving away from your — give a sense of like the use case of why there is a subset of overdraft fees that needs to exist and why you feel okay both competitively and from a regulatory standpoint, that component of fees will be defendable?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, so as we put in our guidance yesterday, we’re eliminating NSF fees altogether. We still have overdraft fees for a service that we’re providing, which is liquidity to our customer base and they appreciate the ability to be able to have that liquidity at time of need. And there is a cost to that. And now we’ve done some things, we’ve given a large — we’ve changed our posting order. We’re going to give short — small dollar loans. We’re going to give you paycheck up to two days available in some cases.

And so we’re doing a lot of things to make it easier for our customers to bank with us and to understand where they stand at any point in time. But if they need that liquidity, we want to be there. We’ve limited our — we will be limiting our overdraft no more than 3 per day to, which is one of the strongest in the industry. So we’re doing a lot of things. We think that’s a value play for our customers. They want that ability for that short-term liquidity and the costs that we charge for it.

Ebrahim Poonawala — Bank Of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Noted. And I guess just a separate question around loan growth. Apologies if I missed it. But talk to us about the EnerBank acquisition, what that means for growth especially some of the non-footprint. I think half of EnerBank is outside of the core Regions’ footprint. Give us a perspective in terms of the opportunity that you have there both in terms of what EnerBank does today and how to scale that up?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes. So we acquired about $3 billion worth of loans right at the end of the — at the beginning of the fourth quarter. We’ll get all that in our averaging numbers, which is where our 4% to 5% growth is for next year. Their production had been about 1% of the industry, which equated to about $1.7 billion in terms of production and that’s what they were doing. And we think we have the ability to take that and ramp it up over time and have a nice growth there. We are excited about EnerBank and excited about the fact that our geographic expansion of that is outside of our core footprint.

It brings us the ability to have more customers throughout the country to do other banking services with as well, including small business contractors that offer products to consumers. So it is a big portion of our growth expectation and we couldn’t be more excited about adding EnerBank and the people that work there to the Regions’ family.

Ebrahim Poonawala — Bank Of America Merrill Lynch — Analyst

Got it. Thanks for taking my questions.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Ken Usdin with Jefferies.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Ken.

Ken Usdin — Jefferies — Analyst

Hey, good morning, guys. Another just follow up on the expenses. David, can you help us understand, of the 3% to 4% growth, what part of that is just organic growth? What part is actually coming from the acquisitions getting into the run rate? And then what are you doing in terms of like offsets in terms of continuous improvement type of efficiencies?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes, Ken, as I mentioned earlier, the overwhelming majority of our growth is related to the acquisitions that we have. We’ve been able and will continue to control our core expenses by managing the things I talked about managing salaries and benefits and head count and our square footage, whether it’d be branch or office square footage. When you manager your head count, you managed a number of computers you have to have. It’s vendor spend. It’s our procurement group, really ensuring that from a demand management standpoint that people that are asking for vendors and third-party services really need them.

And when we have to have them, making sure that we get the best price for the services that we’re getting. That’s ongoing. That’s part of our continuous improvement program and you couple that with leveraging technology and taking out processes that we have, we’re not finished there. Now we have to create opportunities to reinvest. So embedded in the 3% to 4% are the investments we’re making in people and our certain markets that we have that we see opportunities for growth there. We invest in technology, people and services to help us there. So all that’s embedded in the numbers that we’re giving you. But cut into the chase of the 3% to 4%, the vast majority of that is related to the acquisitions that we announced.

Ken Usdin — Jefferies — Analyst

Yes, understand, and I apologize. I missed that comment earlier. One follow-up separately, David, then on the — just on that top spoke, you terminated a little bit more this quarter. Just wanted to understand, like what percentage of that book is now kind of locked out from either you’ve terminated or you understand that the maturity schedule and we see from your — the color NII slide what that expected trajectory is like. So I don’t think there’s much change, but can you let us know if there’s anything different in terms of how you’re viewing that portfolio going forward? Thank you.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes, Ken. So we continue to kind of read the tea leaves in the — where the Feds going in the market with regards to rates, so we took some of our protection off unwind this summer. So we have a little bit more asset sensitivity, that comes in, in the second half of the year. But we have to continue to monitor that because it’s important for us to make sure that we have the proper sensitivity when we expect rates to go, we do. And now it’s just timing. A month ago, maybe a rate increase or two, today it’s four. This morning, there are people talking about maybe it will only be a couple.

So I mean there is — this is very volatile and we’re trying to do the best we can anticipate where those rate moves are going and we’ve locked in a good portion of our fair value, if you will, of our hedge portfolio over half. So I think that we’re in good shape. We can terminate some of those quickly if we want to put more sensitivity in, but right now we think we’re in pretty good spot.

Ken Usdin — Jefferies — Analyst

And do you have an upper bounds of the sensitivity and how much you let it float out? And thanks for your answers, David.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

What we really want to do is we’re not trying to top tick our margin and NII. What we’re trying to do is have a repeatable predictable income statement. What we do when rates get to a point where there’s risk of it going down. We do have risk parameters in terms of how much risk we can have on NII without 100 basis point move. But — and for us is really try and to anticipate where the market is going to move, so we can take full advantage there. But we don’t want — we don’t want to have an unusual pick up in any given period, whether it be a quarter or a year, that’s not repeatable, that’s not helpful to score our shareholders over time.

So we’re trying to get back, we had given you a range of getting up to our margin in the 3.70% [Phonetic] range with a normal interest rate environment. We’re probably going to be in the higher 3.30s [Phonetic] on a core basis this quarter coming up. So we’ll have a little bit of growth there, but it’s just making incremental moves on the portfolio as we see the interest rate environment change.

Ken Usdin — Jefferies — Analyst

Thank you, David.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Gerard Cassidy with RBC.

Gerard Cassidy — RBC Capital Markets — Analyst

Good morning, John and David.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Gerard.

Gerard Cassidy — RBC Capital Markets — Analyst

Hi. David, can you elaborate further on Slide 8 where you give us the interest rate exposure. And you talked about your deposit beta, particularly in the first 100 basis points being 25% due to the higher bidders on your third deposits. Can you tell us how large on the surge deposits on the back of it [Phonetic]. And can you give us some color on how you define surge deposits?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes. So our total surge deposits just mathematically are about $39 billion. Okay. And so when you think of those surge deposits in terms of the beta reaction, there’s really two things that are happening with those surge deposits. Of the surge deposits, about 65% of those we think would have a — actually a lower beta. I’m sorry, a higher beta, that’s $25 billion. And we would put that beta at 75%. I say, we think it’s going to be pretty high, pretty reactive. If you look at the other 35%, we think based on their nature of those accounts of those deposits went into, the debt beta is going to be similar to our legacy the beta which is 10%.

Then if you take the rest of our core legacy deposits, we put a 10% beta on that as well. And if you go back and look at the last 100 basis point rate increase we had in the last cycle, that’s what the beta was. So that’s the math that we’ve really gotten to in our guidance that we’re given you.

Gerard Cassidy — RBC Capital Markets — Analyst

And David, on the surge deposit and the exit non-operating deposits from your corporate customers, are the consumers that makes sense, money that’s over from the stimulus?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes, a big a big portion of those surge deposits are corporate deposits that came in that — because that’s the best place they could put their money and that’s why we believe that 65% of those deposits, so call it $25 billion at 65% of the $39 billion, it’s going to be very reactive because their corporate customers that are likely to put — want to put those to work in a more meaningful place. And we don’t need to pay up for that. So we expect those to probably either move out or to be more expensive.

Gerard Cassidy — RBC Capital Markets — Analyst

Very good. And then as a follow-up, you highlighted your net charge-off ratio. I think you said, it’s the lowest that came in about those [Indecipherable]. And you pointed to net charge-offs initially probably staying around the low level as you saw in the fourth quarter, gradually in the second half of the year start to head towards maybe normalization. Is that based on just because the rates are so low that it’s hard to maintain that or is there a formulaic or some underwriting that you have done that says no we’re going to charge — will you start to see net charge-offs later in the year, excluding of course the acquisition it may influence the reported numbers.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes, it’s not an underwriting change. It’s a reality that obviously consumers and businesses were propped up by stimulus consumers in particular, a lot of that stimulus is running out in this quarter in terms of the childcare [Phonetic] tax credit. We’ve been unusually low as has the industry. So I think that our expectation is we would start to normalize because of the run-off of the stimulus, which starts manifesting itself in the second half of the year.

But that being said, we still think charge-offs will be rather lower than history and 25 basis points to 35 basis points for ’22. We — if the economy continues to perform and consumers do well and manage money well, may be our charge-offs at the lower end of that range. So, a bit of it is trying to anticipate when “normalization” will occur.

Gerard Cassidy — RBC Capital Markets — Analyst

Very good. Thank you for the color.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Matt O’Connor with Deutsche Bank.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Matt.

Matt O’Connor — Deutsche Bank — Analyst

Good morning. It might be a little bit too early to be thinking about this, but given the rate expectations have increased so much, when does that start factoring into how you’re underwriting? Because obviously as rates go up to 3% or even more, it does put pressure on borrowers.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, I think, Matt, one thing, so we’re talking about four 25 basis point moves to get off of virtually zero. If you think of a consumer, a lot of the consumer portfolios are fixed rate portfolio. So they don’t end up having much of an interest rate shock in four moves. On the corporate banking side, again four moves on them. We’ve been monitoring our customers, we know which — where they stand. A lot of them hedge, we would expect as rates starting to — start to move, we actually put — our customers would put on more hedge protection if you will. So we — again we don’t see a lot of payment shocks there. I think it’s — the risk is running out of stimulus and also is there something unique in a given business or industry that could drive losses higher versus rates at this point.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

But the only other thing I’d say is a normal course of business and when underwriting credits, we’re always stressing our interest rate sensitivity. And among other things that might occur. So that would not be a change in our common current practice.

Matt O’Connor — Deutsche Bank — Analyst

Okay. And then just separately on — apologies if I missed that. Your capital markets revenue has been strong all year. And you did increase kind of a run rate for ’22, but we’ve seen some of your peers have really strong cap markets these in 4Q. And I think part of it might just be a mixed issue, but maybe you could talk to that if you didn’t earlier. And if you did, I’ll look at the transcript. Thanks.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

I think it’s a good question. If you just look at the bulk of our capital markets revenue distributed across both the capital raising and advisory services, so whether it’s real estate permanent placement, M&A loan syndications or fixed income transactions, we are generating relatively similar amounts of revenue across those platforms. So we’ve got good diversity. Now we’ve added Clearsight Advisors and we’ve added Sabal Capital. And so, I mean you consider the contribution that those acquisitions will make in concert with the businesses that or products capabilities that we’ve developed, we think the run rate of $90 million to $110 million per quarter is appropriate.

Matt O’Connor — Deutsche Bank — Analyst

Okay, thank you.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Stephen Scouten with Piper Sandler.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning.

Stephen Scouten — Piper Sandler — Analyst

Yes, good morning. Thanks. So just one clarifying question. First, I wanted to make sure, David, from your earlier commentary that the loan growth, the 4% to 5% does include the run-off of PPP or is it ex that PPP impact?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

No, it includes that. It’s — that was one of the important points that it includes overcoming that and having 4.5, I mean, 4% to 5% growth on the average that you see for the year and it’s in our supplement.

Stephen Scouten — Piper Sandler — Analyst

Perfect. That’s what I thought I heard. Thank you. That’s great. And then maybe one other question I had is, can you talk a little bit about the hand-off kind of from the hedging income to the greater rate sensitivity that obviously now you’re pulling forward a bit. I know you have some detail there on Slide 20. But I’m just kind of wondering if you can walk through that. Is there the possibility that a quarter to quarter basis, we could see some decline? Is that $140 million run rate kind of pulls down and the impact of higher rates, pulled it back up?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, I mean you can always have a little timing issue from a quarter-to-quarter. But we’ve got a number of things going on in that chart that you can see, in particular, our growth — a loan growth in our EnerBank transaction that we had. But a good portion of our hedge portfolio is locked in and we’re adding the sensitivity — I forgot who asked the question earlier, but we had a little bit of sensitivity to help us in the second half of the year.

The key thing on the early moves to is that we are — we’re still very asset sensitive because of our deposit base. And so when you start seeing the first couple of moves, that beta is pretty close to zero. And so I think that will aid in the hand-off but it might not be perfect, but if you’re looking at making investment in us over a period of time, we’ve got a — we think we’re well positioned to grow, as the economy continues to grow, we get higher rates. And that’s where Regions really shines, because our deposit base that low core — low-cost core deposit base of ours has been a differentiator for us, because you haven’t seen that we haven’t able to extract the value out of it, because we’ve been in such a low rate environment. But now we’re starting to see that opportunity if in fact we get the rate increases that the forms have baked in.

Stephen Scouten — Piper Sandler — Analyst

Okay, that’s very helpful. And just one other point on that chart is the impact of organic growth obviously has increase in each subsequent year in ’23 and ’24. Is that — it’s a convey that you think organic growth can be even better from a loan growth perspective? Or just that it will be more meaningful given it will be at higher rate?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, it’s a little bit of both. I think we can continue to see absolute balance growth. We’ve acquired new portfolios. And as I mentioned, so just one example is EnerBank where we added $3 billion, that production there historically had been about $1.7 billion. We’re in a lot of states, and we have distribution that’s far better in our bank than what they would have had. And they were a regulated energy company, right. So we have the ability to take that to a new level.

And so that’s just one example. That’s why we continue to make investments because we see opportunities to take a portfolio and be able to push out through our network and all the people that we have working for us to continue to grow. You’re also getting helped by the rate environment. So that’s baked into that 4% to 6% compound annual growth rate as well.

Stephen Scouten — Piper Sandler — Analyst

Perfect. That’s encouraging. Thanks for the color.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Christopher Spahr with Wells Fargo.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning.

Christopher Spahr — Wells Fargo — Analyst

Good morning. So my question is about 2023 expenses. Last month, you said 2.5% was kind of a core run rate for at least to think about wage increases. Is that kind of a good starting point to think about expenses for next year?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Actually, Chris, we’ve had — we’ve seen some inflation this year, that number is going to be a little bit higher as we think about merit increases, payments we need to make to retain certain folks in particular, people that are in the technology side of the house, recruiting those type of things. So that 2.5% is little bit higher than that. Now that is baked into the guidance that we gave you. And so I guess bottom lines we have experienced inflation and we expect that to persist into 2022.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

But now Chris’ question was around 2023, if I heard you correct, Chris.

Christopher Spahr — Wells Fargo — Analyst

That’s correct.

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

And that inflation, that’s not transient, that’s a — that’s going to be in the run rate for ’22. And then you’re going to continue. Now, will you be able to revert back to merit increases that are more consistent in ’23 like we had in the past? And I think that’s accurate.

Christopher Spahr — Wells Fargo — Analyst

Yes, I guess I’m trying to figure out is the difference between deal-related cost that you’re seeing this year versus what is going to be more of a run rate inflation or wage pressure?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, the main thing is, of the 3% to 4% that we’re going to experience, the vast majority of that is related to the acquisitions that we had.

Christopher Spahr — Wells Fargo — Analyst

Okay. And then one quick follow-up please. So last month, you said I think 2% was a good starting point to put money to work and given kind of a high level of dry powder even with the surge deposits. Is that still your thought process? Or do you think it’s going to be a higher level now given with the 10 years already?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Yes. No, we still think — so we think the short end, as we told you that we probably have four short-term rate increases going in this year, but we still think that the 10-year kind of hangs out and approaches 2% by the end of the year. So it doesn’t move as much. We do think there is opportunities, there’s a lot of volatility there. We see the ability to put $1.2 billion [Phonetic] or more to work, and the securities book and we’re convicted on that, we’d be happy to.

We have more cash — idle cash than most everybody because we just have been reluctant to want to take the duration risk because we just don’t think we’re appropriately compensated for it. That being said, things can change. And if we see closer to that 2% on the 10, that may persuade us to put a little bit more to work. Now remember, we’re getting paid for all the increases on the short run — short rate with the money at the Fed. So we’re getting paid a little bit more there.

Christopher Spahr — Wells Fargo — Analyst

Thank you.

Operator

Your next question is from the line of Vivek Juneja with JPMorgan.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Vivek.

Vivek Juneja — JPMorgan — Analyst

Hi, David. Hi, John. So just a clarification on couple of the last two questions. So, you said if the 10-year gets closer to 2%, you might put some to work. So do you have anything factored into your NII guidance for reinvestment of some of that liquidity or not?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

No, we do not. That would be on top of what we’re given you.

Vivek Juneja — JPMorgan — Analyst

Okay. And then on the expense question that was just asked. So are you assuming the incentive comp increase that you had in ’21 is that stays at that level and yet ’22 guidance?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

No, it’s not forecasted to stay at that level. That was — incentive comp was up, I think across the industry and we don’t forecast that it would remain at that level at this time.

Vivek Juneja — JPMorgan — Analyst

Okay. And then it’s partly because you’re assuming some of those revenues will not continue like mortgage and capital markets?

David J. Turner — Senior Executive Vice President & Chief Financial Officer

Well, no, we’ve given you now our revenue growth, but that’s all baked into the budget. And so you don’t get compensated at that level over par if you hit your budget. You got to have a much better year than that, which is what we and most of the industry players did this year. But you’ve reset your expectations now you back down the par, you got to start all over again.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Since that makes sense, we’re increasing targets. So that will have a — the impact of reducing incentives.

Vivek Juneja — JPMorgan — Analyst

Right, right. Okay, makes sense. And the last one for both of you. Loan growth, you’ve talked about very strong pipelines, which implies that you’re expecting loan growth to remain good. Are you seeing that — how are you seeing January, has that continued to be strong because we obviously saw a bigger pickup up later in the fourth quarter and is that continuing in these first couple of three weeks?

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Yes, our pipeline just still — are still good, customers are optimistic, they are I think hopeful that we’ll see trends continue. They’re prepared to make investments. Investments are still constrained in some measure by some uncertainty and by shortage of labor in a lot of cases. But we do have — there are a lot of customers who are actively looking at investments and want to expand the balance sheets, invest in businesses. And the same is true of consumers who are spending. And so we do expect to continue to see loan growth.

Vivek Juneja — JPMorgan — Analyst

Okay, great. Thank you.

Operator

Your final question is from the line of Jennifer Demba with Truist Securities.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Good morning, Jennifer.

Jennifer Demba — Truist Securities — Analyst

Good morning. Could you just talk about your interest now in more non-bank acquisitions? And where — if that’s still the case, where your interest lies, where the strongest interest lies in terms of revenue diversification?

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Yes. So, we do continue to have an interest in non-bank acquisitions. We like to I think continue to add to some of the consumer lending capabilities that we have acquired, if those opportunities arise, invest in capital markets that I think that got a nice return on those investments and been able to leverage those new capabilities to expand relationships. We’re interested in opportunities within wealth management, always looking to acquire mortgage servicing rights if those are available and to potentially add to our mortgage business. So those would be a couple of areas where we would make investment. Great. Thanks so much.

Operator

Thank you. I will turn the call back over to John Turner for closing remarks.

John M. Turner — President and Chief Executive Officer

Okay. Well, thank you. We are also proud of 2021 and all that our associates have accomplished during some very challenging times, staying focused on our customers on each other, investing in our communities. We think we are carrying a lot of momentum into 2022, and are very optimistic about the prospects of emerging and good strong economy. And so, I appreciate your interest and support. Thank you very much.

Operator

[Operator Closing Remarks]

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