Six ailing U.S. banks shuttered

Dec. 5, 2009 at 10:11 AM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 5 (UPI) -- Financial regulators have closed six banks, bringing the total of shuttered U.S. institutions to 130 so far this year, officials said.

The Office of Thrift Supervision and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. announced Friday that the closures included a large Ohio bank, banks in Illinois and Virginia bank and three small Georgia banks. CNNMoney reported.

OTS officials said the largest of the closures was AmTrust Bank in Cleveland, which had earlier been placed under an agency-approved risk reduction but was unable to comply with the minimum capital requirements, the U.S. broadcaster said.

AmTrust "was in an unsafe and unsound condition because of substantial loan losses, deteriorating asset quality, and insufficient capital," mostly due to heavy real estate losses in Florida, California, Arizona and Nevada, an OTS statement said.

Statistics indicate that while the total of 130 banks closed in 2009 is still well short of 1989's record high of 534 bank closures during the savings and loan crisis, the tally is still nearly five times the number that failed in 2008, which itself was the highest number since 1992's 181 bank failures.

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