FDIC says list of troubled banks still growing

The number of troubled banks in the United States jumped to 702 in the fourth quarter, according to the latest report by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.

The FDIC said U.S. banks essentially broke even in the October-December period. They earned $914 million in the quarter, compared with a $37.8 billion loss in the fourth quarter of 2008.

For all of 2009, U.S. banks earned $12.5 billion, up from $4.5 billion in 2008.

Still, the number of banks on the FDIC’s confidential "problem" list increased to 702 from 552 in the third quarter, the most since the height of the savings-and-loan crisis of the early 1990s.

For the first time in three years, more than half the 8,000 federally insured banks and thrifts reported higher income compared with the year-earlier quarter.

However, delinquencies on commercial real estate loans remain a source of concern, and a wave of defaults on such loans could cause more banks to fail, FDIC officials warned.

Last year, 140 federally insured banks failed and were shut down by regulators.

The FDIC expects U.S. bank failures to cost the insurance fund around $100 billion through 2013.

According to the most recent filing by the FDIC, 83 of Wisconsin’s 281 banks lost money in the fourth quarter of 2009. They include:

  • Milwaukee-based M&I Bank lost about $235 million
  • Green Bay-based Associated Bank lost about $167 million
  • Kenosha-based Southport Bank: $7.6 million
  • Menomonee Falls-based Securant Bank & Trust: $6.07 million
  • Burlington-based First Banking Center: $5.9 million
  • Milwaukee-based Guaranty Bank: $5.17 million

However, the majority of Wisconsin’s banks had positive earnings for the fourth quarter of last year. Some of the banks with the highest earnings in the state included Oak Creek-based Tri City National Bank ($14.8 million), Madison-based FPC Financial ($11.1 million), Waupaca-based First National Bank ($3.8 million), Milwaukee-based Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management ($2.2 million), and Fond Du Lac-based National Exchange Bank & Trust ($1.99 million).


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