Banks trim borrowing from emergency Fed loans

Banks trimmed borrowing from the Federal Reserve’s emergency loan program over the past week, adding to evidence that credit problems are easing.

Commercial banks averaged $14.6 billion in daily borrowing for the week that ended Wednesday, the Fed reported Thursday. That was down from $14.8 billion in average borrowing for the previous week.

Banks have been scaling back their use of the Fed’s emergency “discount” loan window as financial conditions have improved. At the peak of the financial crisis in the fall of 2008, daily borrowing from the discount window reached $110 billion as banks found their normal sources of credit frozen.

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The Fed said that banks’ use of short-term loans drawn from the Fed’s “term auction credit” program was unchanged at an average of $38.53 billion this past week, far below the $377.33 billion average for those loans a year ago. [Read the full article]

Doral Financial Corporation (NYSE:DRL – News) (“Doral” or the “Company”), the holding company of Doral Bank, today filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) an offer to exchange up to 16,500,000 shares of its common stock for issued and outstanding shares of its 7.00% Noncumulative Monthly Income Preferred Stock, Series A (“Series A Preferred Stock”), 8.35% Noncumulative Monthly Income Preferred Stock, Series B (“Series B Preferred Stock”), 7.25% Noncumulative Monthly Income Preferred Stock, Series C (“Series C Preferred Stock”), and 4.75% Perpetual Cumulative Convertible Preferred Stock (“Convertible Preferred Stock” and together the “Preferred Stock”). The exchange offer is scheduled to expire at 11:59 p.m., New York City time, on March 12, 2010, unless extended. [Read the full article]

Walter Investment Management Corp. (NYSE Amex: WAC) (“Walter Investment” or the “Company”) today announced results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2009.

The Company reported income before income taxes for the quarter ended December 31, 2009 of $8.1 million, or $0.32 per diluted share as compared to income before income taxes for the third quarter of $9.6 million, or $0.46 per diluted share.  Net income for the fourth quarter of 2009 was $8.5 million, or $0.34 per diluted share.

For the year ended December 31, 2009, the Company reported income before income taxes and spin-off related costs of $39.7 million, in line with its previously announced guidance.  Net income for the year ended December 31, 2009 was $113.8 million, or $5.25 per diluted share. [Read the full article]

Paul Volcker is seen as one of the wise men of American public life. As chairman of the Federal Reserve under Presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan he subdued inflation, for which he is lauded today, although it was controversial at the time. After President Obama election, Mr Volcker was made chairman of the Presidents Economic Recovery Advisory Board, a position which initially seemed largely ceremonial. But Mr Volcker returned to the centre of financial and economic debate last month when Mr Obama endorsed his proposed separation of commercial banking and proprietary trading, a plan dubbed the “Volcker Rule”.

Chrystia Freeland, US managing editor, interviewed Mr Volcker in New York. This is a transcript of that interview.

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Paul Volcker is seen as one of the wise men of American public life. [Read the full article]

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