The U.S. bank-owned life insurance asset total increased to about $138 billion in the first half, up 3.3% from the BOLI total for the first half of 2009, according to Michael White Associates L.L.C. (MWA).

Michael White, Radnor, Pa., has included BOLI assets held by large 930 large bank holding companies (BHCs) and 7,830 stand-alone banks, thrifts and Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.-supervised savings banks.

Banks use BOLI to help pay for employee benefits and offset retirement benefits liabilities.

MWA found:

- Large, top-tier BHCs increased BOLI holdings to $129 billion, up 4% from the total recorded a year earlier.

- At the 1,421 stand-alone banks, 424, or 30%, had BOLI, and the BOLI assets increased 5%, to $2.4 billion.

- At the 753 savings association, 344, or 46%, had BOLI, and their BOLI assets fell 8%, to $7 billion.

- Trevor Thomas