BankUnited Fails, Gets Sold

BankUnited FSB, a Florida-based bank with $12.8 billion in assets and $8.6 billion in deposits, today became the latest bank to fail, thanks to its massive undercapitlization. The Office of Thrift Supervsion closed it, the FDIC was the receiver, and a group of private-equity firms bought its remains. The dour news had no effect on the companies website, which remained a cheerful display of sunny beaches and palm trees. An online poll asked customers, ” Memorial Day is next weekend. What is your favorite way to celebrate? A. Cooking out in the grill B. Going to the beach C. Getting away for the weekend D. Chaining the doors shut and getting a direct flight to Anguilla.” What happens when a bank fails and what do you need to do? 60 Minutes has the answer.

[Bloomberg] [StreetInsider]


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  1. henrygates says:

    The site’s website says this:

    On Thursday, May 21, 2009, BankUnited, FSB, Coral Gables, FL was closed by the Office of Thrift Supervision (OTS). Subsequently, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) was named Receiver. No advance notice is given to the public when a financial institution is closed.

    All deposit accounts, excluding certain brokered deposits, have been transferred to a newly chartered federal savings bank BankUnited, Coral Gables, FL.

    The FDIC has assembled useful information regarding your relationship with BankUnited, FSB. Besides a checking account, you may have Certificates of Deposit, a business checking account, a Social Security direct deposit, and other relationships with the institution.


  2. HIV 2 Elway says:

    BankUnited FSB became the latest bank to fail.

    This is misleading as it implies that a substantial number of banks have failed thus far. Simply not the case.

    • Anonymous says:

      @HIV 2 Elway: 59th bank to fail this year and LARGEST of all banks to fail this year. 59’s not a substantial number!?!

    • StradTrumpeter says:

      @HIV 2 Elway: Uh, according to this site from the FDIC, I count 34 failed banks so far in 2009.


      How does not qualify as “a lot?”

    • StradTrumpeter says:

      @HIV 2 Elway: So 34 bank failures in 2009 doesn’t qualify as a substantial amount to you?


    • chocobo says:

      @HIV 2 Elway: A few dozen banks have failed in the past year, I’d call that substantial.


      • Mr_D says:

        @chocobo: Also there’s the fact that a whopping 3 banks closed in 2007, and zero for both 2006 and 2005.

        • H3ion says:

          @Mr_D: MSNBC was reporting 34 failures this year, but that was more than in all of 2008. This is a thrift and I suspect they were heavily invested in real estate loans in southern Florida. Does anyone find it unusual that they’re going to reopen under the same name?

          • gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

            @H3ion: not really, a new group of investors bought it from the FDIC, why spend the cash geting the new brand name out there when there’s already an established name there? just like what the new linnens and things owners did, instead of building the company up from scratch and advertising a new website and company name, they just used one that’s already well-established (if not a bit tarnished)

  3. laserjobs says:

    Saw this one coming for months with all the leaked news. Funny thing is that the FDIC took it over on a Thursday instead of the traditional “Pizza Friday”.

  4. Coles_Law says:

    “The closing will cost the insurance fund $4.9 billion, pushing the total cost of 34 seizures so far this year to more than $10 billion.”

    On the plus side, most of the other closures didn’t cost the FDIC that much. On the minus side, this single closure doubled the debt. Yow!

  5. scootinger says:

    Meh, it’s Florida. Why don’t they just secede and keep all of their problems to themselves?

  6. grapedog says:

    I guess what I do not understand is….

    If it had to close…how is going to open a few days later?

    How is it costing us or the federal government any money(aside from insured deposits)? If it was closed, sold and re-opened…why would it be costing us any money at all.