12th bank failure of the year announced

Regulators close down Ameribank Inc., a West Virginia-based-bank with total assets of $115 million.

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — Ameribank Inc. was shut down on Friday by the Office of the Thrift Supervision, making it the 12th bank this year to go under.

The Northfork, West Virginia bank had total assets of $115 million and total deposits of $102 million, according to a statement on the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Web site.

The FDIC was named receiver and announced that it entered into purchase and assumption agreements with Pioneer Community Bank, Inc., Iaeger, West Virginia, and the Citizens Savings Bank, Martins Ferry, Ohio, to take over all of Ameribank’s deposits.

Ameribank has five branches located in West Virginia and three branches located in Ohio. Branches in West Virginia will reopen on Monday and Ohio branches will reopen on Saturday.

All customer accounts were automatically transferred to the two new banks and the full amount of their deposits will automatically be insured, the FDIC said.

Customers of the banks can still access their money over the weekend by writing checks or using ATM or debit cards, according to the statement by the FDIC.

A year of bank failures

This year 12 banks have been forced to close their doors. In July IndyMac was closed down marking the largest collapse of an FDIC-insured institution since 1984. The Pasadena, Calif.-based bank failed because it backed risky home loans. With the special Alt-A home loan that IndyMac offered, a home buyer had to show little evidence of income and assets.

When IndyMac was shut down, it had assets of $32 billion and deposits of $19 billion. While the FDIC protected most of IndyMac customer’s assets, some customers lost some of their deposits.

The FDIC insures the assets held by the 8,451 institutions with a total of $13.4 trillion.

By Catherine Clifford, CNNMoney.com staff writerLast Updated: September 19, 2008: 8:48 PM EDT

Source: CNNMoney

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