If anyone out there wants to buy a troubled or failing savings and loan, regulators in California would love to hear from you.
Marking a significant shift in attitude, the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco is sponsoring a seminar later this month to explain the nitty-gritties of acquiring an ailing thrift. And outsiders are invited.
"This reflects our desire to do more deals and get more players to the table," said Michael Patriarca, a bank official. In the past, California regulators sought bidders for sick thrifts by quietly contacting a network of possible buyers, usually companies or investors in the financial services field.
As many as 50 thrifts in California need financial help, Patriarca said. About half those need outside capital from private sources, while the other half is more deeply troubled and also needs financial assistance from the Federal Savings and Loan Insurance Corp. There are 210 savings and loans in California.
Regulators say they have 350 slots available for the meeting, which will be held Aug. 24 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco.