Anybody who reads this blog with some frequency will notice that I in general am a big fan of blogger Matt Yglesias and his work. That said, I have some deep disagreements with him about his latest article about bank dividends.

The final paragraph really sums up some of the concerns he has been blogging about in regards to the solvency of the finance industry.

Yglesias:*

But my point—following Admati and Hellweg—is that regulators shouldn’t just look over JP Morgan’s shoulders and second-guess its investment decisions. Regulators shouldn’t let JP Morgan go so deeply into debt. Or, rather, given that JP Morgan is already deeply in debt they should make it get out of debt. Which shouldn’t be difficult. JP Morgan is profitable. Those profits can be used to pay dividends to JP Morgan shareholders. But they could also be used to reduce JP Morgan’s level of indebtedness. Then JP Morgan managers would be playing less with creditors’ money and more with shareholders’ money. That would make it much less likely that any given bad trade would lead to a bankruptcy scenario. It would let us worry less about second-guessing JP Morgan’s trades, and just be more confident that whether or not they screw up the financial system can stay strong and steady. And contrary to banker myth, blocking banks from becoming so indebted wouldn’t reduce their ability to lend—it would reduce their ability to return profits to shareholders.

*emphasis mine.

Yglesias wishes that regulators (the OCC the CFPB or the FDIC) could force a bank to become less indebted. Except that they already do this!

Banks can be issued issued things called, “consent orders“. Basically what these do is state to the public that the offending bank has been notified that it’s behavior in lending or management of funds has been outside the accepted practice for a lending institution, and that they have a certain amount of time to complete a redress of these offenses. In the most severe cases, banks are banned from providing new credit to borrowers until their existing booked loans are up to snuff. That the regulatory bodies of the United States chose not to do this with JP Morgan is an entire issue in it’s own right; however, let’s not act as though those powers are not totally within the wheelhouse of the regulatory officials.

Further, in my opinion, there are ‘banks’ and then there are ‘Banks’. (notice the capitalization).  Small instituions like thrifts (formerly saving and loan associations) or small commercial banks should be talked about differently than the larger ‘Banks’, ie JP Morgan, Wells, BofA et al. Larger banking houses tend to have a larger portfolio and balance sheet because they use many more financial tools and do much more trading with much more sophisticated instruments that require  a lot of supervision (hence the OCC).

Whereas, if a small commercial bank, “Mom & Pop Local Bank” as Yglesias uses in his example, were to give out dividends to stock owners of the bank, and the bank is in a reasonably healthy position then why shouldn’t it make use of the extra cash on hand. Part of keeping the confidence of investors to me seems that investors like knowing they’ll get at least the money they put in the bank back, but that they see a return on that investment. Otherwise, why put the cash in banks at all? Why not invest in another company or industry? Because returns on stock bolsters confidence. Granted, banks shouldn’t always do this, regardless of size, but to be opposed in principle of the idea that people don’t get a dividend despite investing seems a little off to me.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 29, 2013
Media Contact:
David Barr (202) 898-6992
Email: dbarr@fdic.gov

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has announced the selection of eight new members for its Advisory Committee on Community Banking, which has been providing advice and recommendations to the FDIC on a broad range of community bank policy and regulatory matters since it was established in 2009. The Advisory Committee members represent a cross-section of community bankers from around the country.

“We are fortunate to have such talented and dedicated community bank leaders join our Advisory Committee, which has been a valuable resource for the FDIC over the last few years,” said FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg. “The Advisory Committee has proven to be a key source of information and input for the FDIC on the many significant issues facing community banks,” Gruenberg said.

The Advisory Committee on Community Banking discusses and provides input to the FDIC on a wide variety of topics, including current examination policies and procedures, credit and lending practices, deposit insurance assessments, insurance coverage and regulatory compliance.

The new members of the Advisory Committee are:

Cynthia L. Blankenship, Vice President and COO, Bank of the West, Grapevine, Texas
Leonel Castillo, President and CEO, American Bank of Commerce, Provo, Utah
Jane Haskin, President and CEO, First Bethany Bancorp. Inc., Bethany, Oklahoma
Mark Hesser, President, Pinnacle Bank, Lincoln, Nebraska
James Lundy, Chief Executive Officer, Western Alliance Bank, Phoenix, Arizona
Kim D. Saunders, President, CEO and Director, Mechanics & Farmers Bank, Durham, North Carolina
David Seleski, President, CEO and Director, Stonegate Bank, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Derek Williams, President and CEO, First Peoples Bank, Pine Mountain, Georgia

The new members will join the following individuals already serving on the committee:

Robert F. Baronner, Jr., President and CEO, Bank of Charles Town, Charles Town, West Virginia
Carolyn “Betsy” Flynn, President and CEO, Community Financial Services Bank, Benton, Kentucky
Walter E. Grady, President and CEO, Seaway Bank & Trust, Chicago, Illinois
Ann Marie Mehlum, President and CEO, Summit Bank, Eugene, Oregon
Joseph G. Pierce, President and CEO, Farmers State Bank, Lagrange, Indiana
Dorothy A. Savarese, President and CEO, Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank, Orleans, Massachusetts
Alan Thian, President and CEO, Royal Business Bank, Los Angeles, California

For more information, please visit the Advisory Committee on Community Banking webpage at http://www.fdic.gov/communitybanking/

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Congress created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in 1933 to restore public confidence in the nation’s banking system. The FDIC insures deposits at the nation’s 7,309 banks and savings associations, and it promotes the safety and soundness of these institutions by identifying, monitoring and addressing risks to which they are exposed. The FDIC receives no federal tax dollars — insured financial institutions fund its operations.

FDIC press releases and other information are available on the Internet at http://www.fdic.gov, by subscription electronically (go to http://www.fdic.gov/about/subscriptions/index.html) and may also be obtained through the FDIC’s Public Information Center (877-275-3342 or 703-562-2200).PR-7-2013

Press Release

Banesco USA, Coral Gables, Florida, Assumes All of the Deposits of Security Bank, National Association, North Lauderdale, Florida 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 4, 2012
Media Contact:
Greg Hernandez (202) 898-6984
Cell: (202) 340-4922
Email: ghernandez@fdic.gov

 

Security Bank, National Association, North Lauderdale, Florida, was closed today by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Banesco USA, Coral Gables, Florida, to assume all of the deposits of Security Bank, National Association.

The three branches of Security Bank, National Association will reopen on Monday as branches of Banesco USA. Depositors of Security Bank, National Association will automatically become depositors of Banesco USA. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of Security Bank, National Association should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Banesco USA that it has completed systems changes to allow other Banesco USA branches to process their accounts as well.

This evening and over the weekend, depositors of Security Bank, National Association can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.

As of March 31, 2012, Security Bank, National Association had approximately $101.0 million in total assets and $99.1 million in total deposits. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Banesco USA agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.

Customers with questions about today’s transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-523-8209. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time (EDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., EDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., EDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC’s Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/securitybank.html.

The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $10.8 million. Compared to other alternatives, Banesco USA’s acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC’s DIF. Security Bank, National Association is the 23rd FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the third in Florida. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was First Guaranty Bank and Trust Company of Jacksonville, in Jacksonville, on January 27, 2012.

 

Press Release

Pacific Premier Bank, Costa Mesa, California, Assumes All of the Deposits of Palm Desert National Bank, Palm Desert, California 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2012
Media Contact:
LaJuan Williams-Young
Office: 202-898-3876
Email: lwilliams-young@fdic.gov

 

Palm Desert National Bank, Palm Desert, California, was closed today by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Pacific Premier Bank, Costa Mesa, to assume all of the deposits of Palm Desert National Bank.

The sole branch of Palm Desert National Bank will reopen on Monday as a branch of Pacific Premier Bank. Depositors of Palm Desert National Bank will automatically become depositors of Pacific Premier Bank. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of Palm Desert National Bank should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Pacific Premier Bank that it has completed systems changes to allow other Pacific Premier Bank branches to process their accounts as well.

This evening and over the weekend, depositors of Palm Desert National Bank can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.

As of December 31, 2011, Palm Desert National Bank had approximately $125.8 million in total assets and $122.8 million in total deposits. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Pacific Premier Bank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.

Customers with questions about today’s transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-591-2820. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Pacific Daylight Time (PDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., PDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., PDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., PDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., PDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC’s Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/palmdesert.html.

The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $20.1 million. Compared to other alternatives, Pacific Premier Bank’s acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC’s DIF. Palm Desert National Bank is the 22nd FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the first in California. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was Citizens Bank of Northern California, Nevada City, on September 23, 2011.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2012
Contact: Dean DeBuck
(202) 874-5770

OCC Appoints Receiver for Plantation Federal Bank, Pawleys Island, SC

WASHINGTON — The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver for Plantation Federal Bank, Pawleys Island, SC, a federal savings association. As of December 31, 2011, the institution had approximately $486.4 million in total assets.

The OCC acted after finding that the institution had experienced substantial dissipation of assets and earnings due to unsafe and unsound practices. The OCC also found that the institution is likely to incur losses that will deplete its capital, the institution is critically undercapitalized, and there is no reasonable prospect that the institution will become adequately capitalized without federal assistance.

The FDIC will release information about the resolution of the institution.

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Press Release

Great Southern Bank, Reeds Spring, Missouri, Assumes All of the Deposits of Inter Savings Bank, fsb D/B/A Interbank, fsb, Maple Grove, Minnesota 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2012
Media Contact:
LaJuan Williams-Young
Email: lwilliams-young@fdic.gov

 

Inter Savings Bank, fsb D/B/A InterBank, fsb, Maple Grove, Minnesota, was closed today by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Great Southern Bank, Reeds Spring, Missouri, to assume all of the deposits of InterBank, fsb.

The four branches of InterBank, fsb will reopen on Monday as branches of Great Southern Bank. Depositors of InterBank, fsb will automatically become depositors of Great Southern Bank. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of InterBank, fsb should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Great Southern Bank that it has completed systems changes to allow other Great Southern Bank branches to process their accounts as well.

This evening and over the weekend, depositors of InterBank, fsb can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.

As of December 31, 2011, InterBank, fsb had approximately $481.6 million in total assets and $473.0 million in total deposits. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Great Southern Bank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.

The FDIC and Great Southern Bank entered into a loss-share transaction on $413.0 million of InterBank, fsb’s assets. Great Southern Bank will share in the losses on the asset pools covered under the loss-share agreement. The loss-share transaction is projected to maximize returns on the assets covered by keeping them in the private sector. The transaction also is expected to minimize disruptions for loan customers. For more information on loss share, please visit:http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/lossshare/index.html.

Customers with questions about today’s transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-405-8357. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Central Daylight Time (CDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., CDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., CDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., CDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., CDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC’s Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/Interbank.html.

The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $117.5 million. Compared to other alternatives, Great Southern Bank’s acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC’s DIF. InterBank, fsb is the 20th FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the third in Minnesota. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was Home Savings of America, Little Falls, on February 24, 2012.

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Press Release

First Federal Bank, Charleston, South Carolina, Assumes All of the Deposits of Plantation Federal Bank, Pawleys Island, South Carolina 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2012
Media Contact:
LaJuan Williams-Young
Office: 202-898-3876
Email: lwilliams-young@fdic.gov

 

Plantation Federal Bank, Pawleys Island, South Carolina, was closed today by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with First Federal Bank (formerly known as First Federal Savings and Loan Association of Charleston), Charleston, South Carolina, to assume all of the deposits of Plantation Federal Bank.

The six branches of Plantation Federal Bank will reopen on Monday as branches of First Federal Bank, including the three branches operating under the name of First Savers Bank. Depositors of Plantation Federal Bank will automatically become depositors of First Federal Bank. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of Plantation Federal Bank should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from First Federal Bank that it has completed systems changes to allow other First Federal Bank branches to process their accounts as well.

This evening and over the weekend, depositors of Plantation Federal Bank can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.

As of December 31, 2011, Plantation Federal Bank had approximately $486.4 million in total assets and $440.5 million in total deposits. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, First Federal Bank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.

The FDIC and First Federal Bank entered into a loss-share transaction on $221.7 million of Plantation Federal Bank’s assets. First Federal Bank will share in the losses on the asset pools covered under the loss-share agreement. The loss-share transaction is projected to maximize returns on the assets covered by keeping them in the private sector. The transaction also is expected to minimize disruptions for loan customers. For more information on loss share, please visit:http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/lossshare/index.html.

Customers with questions about today’s transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-640-2538. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time (EDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., EDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., EDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC’s Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/plantation.html.

The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $76.0 million. Compared to other alternatives, First Federal Bank’s acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC’s DIF. Plantation Federal Bank is the 21st FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the first in South Carolina. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was BankMeridian, N.A., Columbia, on July 29, 2011.

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Press Release

Sonabank, McLean, Virginia, Assumes All of the Deposits of HarVest Bank of Maryland, Gaithersburg, Maryland 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 27, 2012
Media Contact:
LaJuan Williams-Young
Office: 202-898-3876
Email: lwilliams-young@fdic.gov

 

HarVest Bank of Maryland, Gaithersburg, Maryland, was closed today by the Maryland Commissioner of Financial Regulation, which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Sonabank, McLean, Virginia, to assume all of the deposits of HarVest Bank of Maryland.

The four branches of HarVest Bank of Maryland will reopen during normal business hours as branches of Sonabank. Depositors of HarVest Bank of Maryland will automatically become depositors of Sonabank. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of HarVest Bank of Maryland should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Sonabank that it has completed systems changes to allow other Sonabank branches to process their accounts as well.

This evening and over the weekend, depositors of HarVest Bank of Maryland can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.

As of December 31, 2011, HarVest Bank of Maryland had approximately $164.3 million in total assets and $145.5 million in total deposits. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Sonabank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets.

Customers with questions about today’s transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-523-8275. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time (EDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., EDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., EDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC’s Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/harvest.html.

The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $17.2 million. Compared to other alternatives, Sonabank’s acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC’s DIF. HarVest Bank of Maryland is the 19th FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the second in Maryland. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was Bank of the Eastern Shore, Cambridge, earlier today.

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Press Release

Alma Bank, Astoria, New York, Assumes All of the Deposits of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB, Fort Lee, New Jersey 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 20, 2012
Media Contact:
Greg Hernandez (202) 898-6984
Cell: (202) 340-4922
Email: ghernandez@fdic.gov

 

Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB, Fort Lee, New Jersey, was closed today by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, which appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver. To protect the depositors, the FDIC entered into a purchase and assumption agreement with Alma Bank, Astoria, New York, to assume all of the deposits of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB.

The sole branch of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB will reopen on Saturday as a branch of Alma Bank. Depositors of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB will automatically become depositors of Alma Bank. Deposits will continue to be insured by the FDIC, so there is no need for customers to change their banking relationship in order to retain their deposit insurance coverage up to applicable limits. Customers of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB should continue to use their existing branch until they receive notice from Alma Bank that it has completed systems changes to allow other Alma Bank branches to process their accounts as well.

This evening and over the weekend, depositors of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB can access their money by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards. Checks drawn on the bank will continue to be processed. Loan customers should continue to make their payments as usual.

As of December 31, 2011, Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB had approximately $51.9 million in total assets and $50.7 million in total deposits. Alma Bank will pay the FDIC a premium of 1.85 percent to assume all of the deposits of Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Alma Bank agreed to purchase approximately $15.7 million of the failed bank’s assets. The FDIC will retain the remaining assets for later disposition.

Customers with questions about today’s transaction should call the FDIC toll-free at 1-800-430-8098. The phone number will be operational this evening until 9:00 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time (EDT); on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Sunday from noon to 6:00 p.m., EDT; on Monday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., EDT; and thereafter from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., EDT. Interested parties also can visit the FDIC’s Web site at http://www.fdic.gov/bank/individual/failed/fortlee.html.

The FDIC estimates that the cost to the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) will be $14.0 million. Compared to other alternatives, Alma Bank’s acquisition was the least costly resolution for the FDIC’s DIF. Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, FSB is the seventeenth FDIC-insured institution to fail in the nation this year, and the first in New Jersey. The last FDIC-insured institution closed in the state was First State Bank, Cranford, on October 14, 2011.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 20, 2012
Contact: Dean DeBuck
(202) 874-5770

OCC Appoints Receiver for Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank

WASHINGTON — The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) today appointed the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as receiver for Fort Lee Federal Savings Bank, Fort Lee, New Jersey, a federal savings association. As of December 31, 2011, the institution had approximately $51.9 million in total assets.

The OCC acted after finding that the institution had experienced substantial dissipation of assets and earnings due to unsafe or unsound practices. The OCC also found that the institution incurred losses that depleted its capital, the institution is critically undercapitalized, and there is no reasonable prospect that it will become adequately capitalized without federal assistance.

The FDIC will release information about the resolution of the institution.

In what has to be a real bipartisan move, the two new members were picked by GOP lawmakers.

Money quote:

Former Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City chief Thomas Hoenig and Jeremiah Norton, who had stints at the Treasury Department and JPMorgan Chase & Co., will be sworn in for their terms on the five-person FDIC board in a private ceremony.

On Friday we reported on the failures of two banks that were placed in recievership. At this same time in 2011, there had been 14 failures already.

Source.