In an effort to strengthen its balance sheet, Bank of America in November and December sold 400 million common shares and issued $2.3 billion in debt to replace $5.8 billion of preferred stock.
The preferred stock was more expensive for Bank of America Corp.'s balance sheet because it paid investors annual dividends of 5.25 percent to 8.25 percent.
The Charlotte, N.C., bank made the disclosure in a regulatory filing.
The bank has been selling assets to meet stricter regulation that require banks to be better prepared to deal with economic downturn. Bank of America has working hard to fortify its balance sheet _ last year it was the only one among the four largest banks that was denied an application with the Federal Reserve to pay dividends to its shareholders.