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What We're Reading: The Good Friday edition
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FDIC: Bank closures slow and loan portfolios grow

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Banks insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. added $64.4 billion in total loans and leases, a 0.9% increase from the previous quarter and the first growth in three years. Loans of all types increased in the second quarter, according to the FDIC quarterly banking profile released Tuesday. Mortgages showed the lowest growth, up 0.2% from the previous quarter, but given the still lingering struggles and regulatory uncertainty in the industry, FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg said it was significant but tempered his optimism. "At the same time, a significant portion of the overall growth in loans represented intercompany lending between related banks," Gruenberg said. "Lending activity still has a long way to go before it approaches normal levels." The number of problem banks monitored by the FDIC dropped for the first time since the third quarter of 2006. The FDIC reported 865 problem institutions on the list, down from 888 in the previous quarter. There have been 68 bank failures so far this year, nearly half of the 119 closed at this point in 2010. Loan-loss provisions totaled $19 billion, a 53% decline from one year ago and the seventh-straight quarter of decreases. Delinquent loans at the banks reached $319.8 billion, a 6.5% drop as well. For the second quarter, banks earned a collective $28.8 billion. While net income increased 37.9% from one year ago, revenues declined for the second consecutive quarter, dropping by almost $2 billion, according to the FDIC. "Recent events have reminded us that the U.S. economy and the U.S. banks face serious challenges ahead," Gruenberg said. Write to Jon Prior. Follow him on Twitter @JonAPrior.

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