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U.S. bank failures declined in 2011

January 10, 2012|By E. Scott Reckard
  • California, Georgia and Florida are among the states with the most bank failures in recent years.
California, Georgia and Florida are among the states with the most bank… (SNL Financial )

Ninety-two U.S. banks and thrifts failed in 2011, down from 157 in 2010 and 140 in 2009.

In a report this week, SNL Financial generated a series of charts that showed the number of failures were far greater during the savings-and-loan meltdown that began in the 1980s and extended into the early '90s.

The assets of failed banks peaked in 2008, however. No surprise there: Among the institutions seized by regulators was Seattle's Washington Mutual Bank, the largest savings and loan in the nation with $307 billion in assets and the biggest bank ever to fail. WaMu is now part of JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Another big failure that year was Southern California's IndyMac Bank, another savings and loan, which had $32 billion in assets. The Pasadena institution, acquired by a consortium of wealthy private investors, now operates as OneWest Bank.

By contrast, the median asset size for the last 20 banks that have failed is $193 million.

California was a hotbed for failures early on in the banking crisis but last year had just four small banks and thrifts go under, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.: Citizens Bank of Northern California in Nevada City; San Luis Trust Bank in San Luis Obispo; Charter Oak Bank in Napa; and Canyon National Bank in Palm Springs.


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