Night time Links: 2009-08-28

  • FDIC: Failed Bank Information – Bank Closing Information for Affinity Bank, Ventura, CA

    As of July 10, 2009, Affinity Bank had total assets of $1 billion and total deposits of approximately $922 million. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Pacific Western Bank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets. The FDIC and Pacific Western Bank entered into a loss-share transaction on approximately $934 million of Affinity Bank’s assets.

  • FDIC: Failed Bank Information – Bank Closing Information for Mainstreet Bank, Forest Lake, MN

    As of June 30, 2009, Mainstreet Bank had total assets of $459 million and total deposits of approximately $434 million. Central Bank will pay the FDIC a premium of 0.10 percent to assume all of the deposits of Mainstreet Bank. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, Central Bank agreed to purchase essentially all of the assets. The FDIC and Central Bank entered into a loss-share transaction on approximately $268 million of Mainstreet Bank’s assets.

  • FDIC: Failed Bank Information – Bank Closing Information for Bradford Bank, Baltimore, MD

    As of June 30, 2009, Bradford Bank had total assets of $452 million and total deposits of approximately $383 million. In addition to assuming all of the deposits of the failed bank, M&T agreed to purchase essentially all of the failed bank’s assets. The FDIC and M&T entered into a loss-share transaction on approximately $338 million of Bradford Bank’s assets. M&T will share in the losses on the asset pools covered under the loss-share agreement.

  • Obama’s pay czar no stranger to big paychecks | Reuters

    The "pay czar" tasked by the U.S. government with ruling on the eye-popping compensation of some of Wall Street’s top earners is far from a stranger to big paychecks and the trappings of wealth. Kenneth Feinberg made $5.76 million last year as a partner in his Washington law firm, Feinberg Rozen LLP, according to a government ethics filing obtained by Reuters. And his assets, which include a stake in his law firm, two homes and dozens of investments, are worth anywhere from $11 million to $37 million, according to the filing, which places assets in broad value categories.

  • Twenty-six Lies About H.R. 3200 |

    A notorious analysis of the House health care bill contains 48 claims. Twenty-six of them are false and the rest mostly misleading. Only four are true.

  • The Definitive Guide to htaccess Techniques: Do’s and Don’ts

    Of all the elements of web design and coding, htaccess can be one of the most intimidating. After all, it’s an incredibly powerful tool and one that has the potential to completely break your site if you’re not careful.

  • naked capitalism: "The Five Stages of Panic Buying"

    Hilarious! A must read on what investors are thinking when they panic buy

  • Banks ‘Too Big to Fail’ Have Grown Even Bigger –

    J.P. Morgan Chase, an amalgam of some of Wall Street’s most storied institutions, now holds more than $1 of every $10 on deposit in this country. So does Bank of America, scarred by its acquisition of Merrill Lynch and partly government-owned as a result of the crisis, as does Wells Fargo, the biggest West Coast bank. Those three banks, plus government-rescued and -owned Citigroup, now issue one of every two mortgages and about two of every three credit cards, federal data show.

  • Research teams spend the summer picking through the "Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch": Scientific American Blog

    It isn’t the most picturesque of locations, but a number of scientists spent their summer taking in the 25.9-million-square-kilometer oval of the Pacific Ocean known as the North Subtropical Gyre, or "Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch," located about 1,600 kilometers off California’s coast.

  • Toyota shuts first car plant in its 72-year history

    Toyota will shut an assembly plant for the first time in its 72-year history after the failure of a joint venture with General Motors. New United Motor Manufacturing in Fremont, California, will end production of Corolla cars and Tacoma pickups in March 2010, Toyota said in a statement.

  • “In the Tank Forever: Tech Ticker, Yahoo! Finance

    despite signs of improvement in consumer confidence and retail stocks rising, Davidowitz is steadfast in his belief the consumer is dead… Davidowitz, who runs a retail consulting firm Davidowitz and Associates, thinks certain discount retailers, grocers, drug store chains and a select few department stores can survive and prosper in the future.

  • Gary Locke: Fixing Health Care Is Good for Business –

    troubling are the stories I hear from CEOs, entrepreneurs and workers. Rising health-care costs are crushing American companies—particularly small businesses that are the source of much of our economic vitality.

  • Kass: Sooner or Later, the Piper Must Be Paid –

    My view is that investors will shortly see through the current sugar high and the better-than-expected earnings cycle and will begin to look over the valley at the chronic and secular issues that have emerged from the past cycle and from policy decisions aimed at returning the domestic economy toward self-sustaining growth.

  • FT Alphaville – The FDIC is not bust, ok?

    The number of problem banks and thrifts on the FDIC’s watchlist rose sharply to 416 in the second quarter from 305 in the first. Meanwhile, guaranteed institutions reported a net loss of $3.7bn.

  • Recession Finally Hits Down on the Farm –

    The American farm, which has weathered the global recession better than most U.S. industries, is starting to succumb to the downturn. The Agriculture Department forecast Thursday that U.S. farm profits will fall 38% this year, indicating that the slump is taking hold in rural America. Much of the sector had escaped the harsher aspects of the crisis, such as the big drop in property values plaguing city dwellers and suburbanites.

  • Obama Approval Falls to 50% — Taegan Goddard’s Political Wire

    The Gallup Daily Tracking poll shows President Obama’s approval rating hitting 50% — a new low since he’s been president.

  • Gillian Tett – Could ‘Tobin tax’ reshape financial sector DNA?

    Does the world need a global “Tobin tax”? That is the question buzzing around London’s financial circles this week. Some three decades ago, James Tobin, the economist, first proposed introducing a tax on financial transactions to deter short-term currency speculation.

  • More Bad News Bears / Banks — John Lounsbury

    If failure is accepted now, bad assets are isolated and healthier assets are transferred to stronger banks. The weakest banks are gone and the stronger banks are strengthened. The financial system is healthier immediately rather than several years from now.

  • US consumer spending rises again

    US consumer spending rose slightly in July, helped in part by the government’s "cash for clunkers" car scrappage scheme. Spending increased by 0.2% from the previous month, the third consecutive monthly rise. Personal income remained virtually unchanged.

  • Unemployment in Detroit Climbs to 28.9 Percent – ABC News

    Despite news of an improving economy, many residents of Michigan haven’t felt the impact of the nation’s stimulus programs. The state of Michigan has the highest unemployment rate in the nation at 15 %. Other large cities in Michigan are extremely challenges as well. The city of Highland Park had a 36% unemployment rate in July, Pontiac 35 % and Flint 28 %.

  • Physicists successfully predict stock exchange plunge – New Scientist

    Arnette has been at this in many markets. Interesting, but maintain your scepticism. "Now a team of physicists and financiers have bucked the trend by successfully predicting a steep fall in the Shanghai Stock Exchange. Their model, which employs concepts from the physics of complex atomic systems, was developed by Didier Sornette of the Financial Crisis Observatory in Zurich, Switzerland, and Wei-Xing Zhou of the East China University of Science and Technology in Shanghai.

  • Rob Johnson: Squandered Honeymoon: How Botched Bailouts Hamper Healthcare Reform

    Just after the inauguration, many in the markets felt that a bold financial plan would be announced… Instead, we got nothing on inauguration day. We got a plan-to-have-a-plan in early February, followed by the announcement of PPIP and infinite forbearance… As a final insult, we heard Administration officials waxing on about the sanctity of contracts while the autoworkers’ benefits and pensions were being restructured. The public was rightly enraged.

  • BBC NEWS | Business | Japan unemployment hits new high

    Japan’s unemployment rate rose to a record 5.7% in July in figures released just days before a general election.

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