Another US Bank Collapses – Biggest In US History

As the debate over a US$700-billion bank bail-out rages on in Washington, one of the largest US banks – Washington Mutual Inc. -has collapsed under the weight of its enormous bad bets on the mortgage market.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation seized WaMu yesterday, and then sold the thrift’s banking assets to JPMorgan Chase & Co. for US$1.9 billion ($2.28 billion).

Seattle-based WaMu, which was founded in 1889, is the largest bank to fail by far in America’s history. Its US$307 billion ($368 billion) in assets eclipse those of Continental Illinois National Bank, which failed in 1984 with US$40 billion in assets; adjusted for 2008 dollars, its assets totalled US$67.7 billion ($81.2 billion). IndyMac, seized in July, had US$32 billion ($38.4 billion) in assets.

One positive is that the sale of WaMu’s assets to JPMorgan Chase prevents the thrift’s collapse from depleting the FDIC’s insurance fund. But that detail is likely to give only marginal solace to Americans facing tighter lending and watching their stock portfolios plunge in the wake of the nation’s most momentous financial crisis since the Great Depression.



2 Responses to Another US Bank Collapses – Biggest In US History

  1. Pingback: PM Thompson Calling It As It Is Should Barbadians Worry About Their Assets In US Banks? « Bajan Global Report

  2. Pingback: Rapid European Banks Bailouts Another US Bank Goes Under As Financial Crisis Further Spreads « Bajan Global Report

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