The American banking industry enjoyed profits of $35.3 billion in the first quarter of 2012, the industry’s best performance since 2007, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. But it did so largely because banks put aside less money to cover bad loans, while keeping a lid on new lending. —ARK
Los Angeles Times:
The industry continued to recover from the financial crisis and deep recession, with just 16 FDIC-insured banks failing in the first three months of the year, according to the agency’s quarterly banking profile.
It was the fewest failures since the fourth quarter of 2008. Overall, 438 banks have failed since the end of 2007, when the recession hit. There are about 7,300 banks and savings and loans covered by FDIC insurance.
… But the news was not all good. Banks lent slightly less money in the first quarter, $56.3 billion, down 0.8% from the previous quarter, the FDIC said. But Gruenberg said it was not cause for alarm yet.