Make it three

No sooner had I posted about the collapse of two American banks than a third one went down, on a Sunday no less. This one's a New York outfit called Signature Bank, and its business was much like that of the failed Silicon Valley Bank. At last report, it had deposits of about $89 billion.

Along with $175 billion at Silicon Valley, that gets us to more than a quarter of a trillion dollars of deposits in jeopardy.

Perhaps more remarkably, the federal government is going to step in and ensure that all deposits at both banks are paid, even those in excess of the $250,000 insured-account limit. Can they do that? Only in case of an emergency that threatens the entire financial system.

You might want to read that again. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and the boys are invoking powers available only to avert a major disaster. We are on that brink now.

Supposedly the taxpayers won't be billed for the bailout. But you have to wonder who's next, and how big a divot they will leave in the deposit insurance fairway.

Although depositors at Silicon Valley and Signature are no doubt relieved, people who own those banks' stocks and bonds will get nothing. You have to wonder who that is. A mutual fund that you've got your 401(k) heavily into, perhaps?

I can't seem to find any update on how much help, if any, this week's other failed bank, Silvergate, will get. But hey, that one's a mere $6 billion, no biggie.

I'm afraid to look at the stock charts for the next few days. I suspect it's going to be downright bloody.


  1. Things go on forever until suddenly they don't. Interest rate risk is a thing.

  2. No one wanted to buy Silicon Valley Bank, which should say something about the quality of product coming out of that region at the moment. Not even Diamond Jamie wanted to buy them just for the Rolodex. The bad times are just starting for tech.

    There's a great Twitter feed out there showing who the faces were occupying the C-Suite at SVB. It was filled with folks who drove us off the cliff in 2008 and then got Trump and the corporate Dems to go along with easing regulation a decade later (to their credit, Wyden and Merkley were no's; Schraeder dug it though). Fascinating. None of them should be allowed to set foot inside a financial institution again, let alone run one.

    Regional banks are toast now. It took fifteen years, but Jamie has won out.

  3. Maybe Elon Musk will buy SVB and, once he gets it de-woked, everything will be just swell again.


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