Friday, September 23, 2016

This Week in Bank Failures

Cuts: Commerzbank, the second largest bank in Germany, is planning job cuts. The board next week will consider a plan to cut 2,000 jobs as the bank scales back its offerings to business customers. Deutsche Bank is making plans to close its loss-leader Australian wealth management business. It will serve Australia and New Zealand clients from Singapore.

CNN spoke to employees of giant banks and what they found could be trouble for the industry. Current and former Wells Fargo employees said the bank routinely identified and fired workers who reported improper marketing practices to the bank’s supposedly anonymous ethics hotline. Employees of other major banks said the marketing practices at Wells Fargo are not far removed from the rest of the industry. 

Wells Fargo’s CEO has resigned his Fed position, obviously needing to focus on the continuing crisis at Wells Fargo.

The SocGen trader convicted of forgery for his high-risk trading won’t owe €4.9 billion in damages to the bank. The bank’s own management failures were the primary cause of the subsequent losses, an appeals court ruled in reducing the damages amount to €1 million.

Tonight’s bank failure was Allied Bank, with five locations in the general area of Fort Smith, Arkansas. The failed bank had $65 million in deposits. After state regulators closed the bank, the FDIC turned the deposits and assets over to almost-local competitor Today’s Bank. Allied Bank was founded in 1902 in Mulberry and was known as Bank of Mulberry before 2002. The bank’s holding company filed for bankruptcy reorganization in 2014, but was ordered liquidated in 2015. The bank had a high level of bad loans but also had higher than average expenses, making it more difficult to recover from financial setbacks. This is only the fifth bank failure of the year.