Sure, a record number of homeowners have missed mortgage payments, but they aren’t alone.
More than 120 banks (mostly small, regional ones) that received federal aid via Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) have missed scheduled quarterly dividend payments.
That’s more than a sixth of the banks that received aid at the height of the mortgage crisis.
Another five banks that received capital injections from TARP have outright failed, likely costing taxpayers $3 billion.
And a record six banks have missed six dividend payments, while Southern California-based bank Saigon National Bank has missed seven.
The rising number of “deadbeat banks” has prompted Treasury to weigh the option of appointing members to the boards of banks that miss six or more dividend payments, but thus far the agency has refrained from doing so.
It would only make sense at banks that received a sizable investment, such as AnchorBank of Wisconsin, which received $110 million, and Seacoast National Bank of Florida, which received $50 million.
Of course, things aren’t so bad if you compare them to massive bailouts tied to AIG and General Motors – officials noted that taxpayers have already recovered roughly three-quarters of the TARP funds invested in banks.
And the estimated cost of TARP has fallen despite all the missed payments, with the projected final cost now only $66 billion.