Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Insurance Companies Face Hurdles to Getting TARP Money

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By Avi Klein on March 30, 2009 3:03 PM | No Comments | No TrackBacks

When the Treasury Department announced that it would spend $700 billion to bail out the nation's banks, a number of insurance companies saw an opportunity. If they became banks, they would be eligible for government money at cheap terms.
Six months later, it's looking more complicated than they imagined, with at least one insurance company changing its mind, and others still waiting to hear back from Treasury.
Earlier this month, for instance, federal regulators agreed to extend the deadline for The Hartford Financial Service Co. to close its pending purchase of Florida-based Federal Trust Bank to March 31.
When it applied in November to buy the struggling savings and loan and seek money under the Troubled Asset Relief Program, Hartford said it could get as much as $3.6 billion in bailout money.
The purchase has not been completed, however, and a Hartford spokesman refused today to say whether he now expects the deal to go through. The company has said that the deal is contingent on Hartford receiving TARP money.
A call to Federal Trust was not returned before deadline. The Office of Thrift Supervision, which must approve the deal, would not comment.
Hartford has struggled in the past year to maintain adequate capital levels, and has also had to address issues related to the Allianz Group, a German financial company that owns a partial stake in Hartford. Banking regulations limit the ability of foreign-owned companies to control American banks.
Other insurance companies have found buying a bank more difficult or less attractive than they might have originally thought. Dutch financial services firm Aegon N.V., which had considered buying Maryland-based Suburban Federal Savings Bank through one of its U.S. subsidiaries, later withdrew its application.
Still others have found that buying a bank doesn't automatically entitle them to bailout money. Lincoln National Corp., which bought Indiana-based Newton County Loan and Savings, is still waiting to hear back from Treasury about its November application for TARP money.
Genworth Financial, which reached an agreement in December to buy Minnesota-based Interbank, also is waiting to hear back from federal regulators about the purchase and from Treasury about its TARP application.

Banks repay TARP money—one is a Belvidere S&L from some years back--TCF Financial

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By Chris Carey on April 1, 2009 7:04 AM | No Comments | No TrackBacks

Old National Bancorp said it returned the $100 million it received through the Treasury Department's Troubled Assset Relief Program.

Old National, based  in Evansville, Ind., is the eighth TARP receipient to either repay the government or file notification to do so.

Three other banks said Tuesday that they also had redeemed the preferred stock they issued to the Treasury Department in return for public money.

Signature Bank, of New York, returned $120 million. Iberiabank Corp., of Lafayette, La., repaid $90 million and Bank of Marin, of Novato, Calif., returned$28 million.

Old National had not previously announced its intention to return the TARP money. It offered no specific explanation for the move.

It said in a press release that it had performed a "rigorous stress test'' of its balance sheet and earnings, comparable to the test the Treasury Department is requiring of the largest TARP recipients.

"Based on the results of the stress test,'' Old National said, "The company believes that it's well positioned to withstand current and future economic challenges.''

The other banks that have filed notifications with the government to redeem their shares are TCF Financial Corp.; Sun Bancorp Inc.; Shore Bancshares Inc., and Centra Financial Inc.

The eight banks that have repaid their TARP money or initiated the process to repay it got a total of $828.5 million in taxpayer capital.

McHenry County Auditor

Auditor's Office Fraud, Waste, and Abuse Hotline  If you observe any fraud, waste, abuse, or misuse of McHenry County resources or assets, please call the Auditor's Office toll-free hotline at 1-866-908-2261.  This hotline is answered by the County Auditor  (Monday through Friday)   between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.  If the Auditor is not available, you may leave a message.  Your number does not show up on Caller ID.  You may also send an email to auditor@co.mchenry.il.us.  All information will be held in the strictest confidence.                       

Click here to find this website:  http://www.co.mchenry.il.us/common/CountyDpt/auditor/FraudHotline.asp

Well Boone County Residents what do you think of this?  To whom do we in Boone County complaim if we observe fraud, waste, abuse or misuse of Boone County resources?  Your elected board member?  Board Chairman?  States Attorney?

Northwest Herald | Banking on a blog: How to get more than a penny for your thoughtsHewre

lisa  Here is a smart lady.  She is making money blogging.  Don’t worry I do not have the traffic to do that.  Read the story and perhaps check out her blog.  

Begin by clicking on the followingNorthwest Herald | Banking on a blog: How to get more than a penny for your thoughts

Kane hot line ready for Election Day complaints :: Beacon News :: Local News

Well, does Boone County have anything like this?  Of course we do not have any irregularities in regards to elections.

kane county court house

Click on the following for more details:

Kane hot line ready for Election Day complaints :: Beacon News :: Local News

House GOP Offers More Detailed Alternative Budget Plan - washingtonpost.com

The revised Democratic proposals would require the nation to borrow about $4 trillion over the next five years, compared with $3.1 trillion in new borrowing under the GOP alternative.

The revised Democratic proposals would require the nation to borrow about $4 trillion over the next five years, compared with $3.1 trillion in new borrowing under the GOP alternative.

House GOP Offers More Detailed Alternative Budget Plan - washingtonpost.com

ADP: US lost 742,000 jobs | csmonitor.com

These numbers are even higher than the official Labor Department numbers. Because ADP pays 1-in-6 private sector employees in the United States every pay period across a broad range of industries, firm sizes, and geographies, it has a unique and significant perspective on the U.S. labor market.

That’s the biggest loss ever recorded by ADP, a national payroll processor, since it began tracking unemployment in 2000.

To read more, click on the following:

ADP: US lost 742,000 jobs | csmonitor.com

To Read the ADP Report directly, go to:  http://www.adpemploymentreport.com/pdf/FINAL_Report_March_09.pdf

Mr. Dini’s Newsletter

ANTHONY DINI PUBLISHES ANOTHER ELECTRONIC NEWSLETTER

Boone County Board Member Anthony Dini has published another electronic newsletter to inform his constituents about important issues facing the current County Board . Dini was elected in November, and as part of his campaign promise, will be providing a newsletter each month to establish ongoing communications between his second district residents and himself.

To view the entire three pages, go to:  http://02ce361.netsolhost.com/images/March_2009.pdf

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Local industries show resilience | Daily Chronicle of DeKalb, Il

DeKalb Courthouse

DeKalb County’s current economic situation:  There are a lot of higher-wage jobs locally in manufacturing and in health and social services, Gleeson said, but relatively few jobs in other high-wage sectors, like management, construction, finance and information. There are also a lot of low-wage jobs in retail and hospitality services, he said.

To read more, click on the following:

Local industries show resilience | Daily Chronicle

McHenry Wal-Mart moving to Johnsburg?

 

What incentives was Wal-Mart given to build in McHenry in the first place? Tax deferments? Low water rates? Low sewer rates? And for how long? And now the plan is to build in the town next door?

Read the story by clicking on the following:

Northwest Herald | McHenry Wal-Mart moving to Johnsburg?

GM Bankruptcy Talk Revs Up Asian Automakers - Forbes.com

 

honda-logo Hyundai toyoto

Japanese and South Korean investors bought into automakers on Wednesday, celebrating U.S. President Barack Obama's apparent willingness to let their rivals General Motors and Chrysler go into bankruptcy.

Click on the following to read the story:

GM Bankruptcy Talk Revs Up Asian Automakers - Forbes.com

Recovery.gov Falling Short of Expectations So Far – ProPublica

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But, after three weeks of reporting, the numbers reveal bleak generalities - stimulus money flowing at a trickle – and few details to clarify the data or overcome the layman’s obstacles to interpreting it

DEFINITIONS:  1. An agency incurs an obligation, for example, when it places an order, signs a contract, awards a grant, purchases a service, or takes other actions that require the government to make payments,” 2. By contrast, a disbursement is a federal agency’s payment “to liquidate government obligations.” In other words, cash or checks change hands. There’s not a glossary on Recovery.gov explaining these distinctions.

$6.5 billion—a touch under two percent of the $364 billion that has already been appropriated to the agencies—has made it into the economy as of March 20, the last date reports were filed. Another five percent ($18.49 billion) is obligated. Most of the money already spent went to the states to cover Medicaid expenses.

Chart 4-1 Stimulus

Read the rest of the story by clicking on the following:  Recovery.gov Falling Short of Expectations So Far - ProPublica

Nicolas Sarkozy - Priority 1: World Growth - washingtonpost.com

 

Here are some of the French president’s words:

This crisis is not a crisis of capitalism but the breakdown of a system that drifted away from capitalism's most fundamental values.

This week we must attach the same sense of urgency to the regulation of financial markets

As we make progress toward reforming global economic governance, we must offer much more space to emerging nations,

We must achieve practical results beginning with tomorrow's summit. And failure is not an option.

sarkozy10c  Nicolas Sarkozy

Here is “possibly” the opening speech for the G20 Conference that the French President will deliver.

Click on the following for more details:  Nicolas Sarkozy - Priority 1: World Growth - washingtonpost.com

Bailout tab: $3 trillion so far | csmonitor.com

US Treasury  us-treasury-bonds

Both Senators and oversight officials at Tuesday’s hearing complained of being left in the dark by the Treasury. The Treasury official in charge of TARP,  Neel Kashkari, declined to appear and answer questions at the session.

Read more by clicking on the following:

Bailout tab: $3 trillion so far | csmonitor.com

Europe’s stimulus to its auto industry | csmonitor.com

Image Preview  eumap2

In most cases, including Germany’s, the incentive programs require customers to turn in a car that is at least nine years old to qualify for the money….in Germany, where 1 in 5 people work in the automotive industry, customers are not the only ones happy with the program.

Europe’s auto industry started the year with a 30 percent decrease in new-car registrations compared with the year before

That amounts to €2,500 per person for the first 600,000 cars sold in Germany

Italy is offering each citizen €1,500 to buy a new car, and doubling that figure for those who buy hybrid models. France is offering €1,000. Britain is weighing a similar incentive.

Read the whole story by clicking on the following:

Fresh challenge for Germany’s car dealers: too many customers | csmonitor.com

Auto bankruptcy: quick surgery or long slog? | U.S. | Reuters

GM Headquarters

Automakers have tightly-knit operations -- from development to parts supplies, assembly and distribution -- that would likely require years of cooperation between the so-called good parts of the company and those hived off in bankruptcy.

GM said in February that a traditional bankruptcy could require $100 billion of financing from the U.S. government. That figure, if it comes to fruition, would be more than 10 times the size of the largest debtor-in-possession bankruptcy loan in history.

GM said in February that a traditional bankruptcy could require $100 billion of financing from the U.S. government. That figure, if it comes to fruition, would be more than 10 times the size of the largest debtor-in-possession bankruptcy loan in history.

Auto bankruptcy: quick surgery or long slog? | U.S. | Reuters

Pardon sought for first black heavyweight champ

In this 1932 file photo, boxer Jack Johnson is shown working ...image

Click on the following to read this AP Story:

Pardon sought for first black heavyweight champ