Friday, February 18, 2011

This Week in Bank Failures

Two more banks failed in Georgia tonight, along with two in California. Georgia state banking regulators closed Habersham Bank in the north end of the state, and Citizens Bank of Effingham, in the Savannah area.

Habersham Bank’s $340 million in deposits and eight branches are being taken over by South Carolina-based SCBT, which will be keeping the Habersham name and operating its new branches as a new Georgia-based bank. The failed bank had opened in 1904 in Clarkesville. By the end, a third of its assets were troubled loans and foreclosed real estate. A year ago, SCBT had acquired the assets of Community Bank & Trust, which had a similar history, but was more than three times as large.

Citizens Bank deposits and assets are being purchased by HeritageBank of the South.

In California, the OTS closed San Luis Trust Bank, which had $272 million in deposits. The failed bank’s loan losses included $1.8 million in loans to a failed local nightclub, which is set to go up for auction this month because of unpaid real estate taxes. First California Bank is taking over the deposits and purchasing the assets.

Farther north in California, state regulators closed Charter Oak Bank, in Napa. Local competitor Bank of Marin is taking over the deposits and purchasing some of the assets.