That's the longest list in 17 years, and it's only going to get worse. In fact, regulators are expecting the number of troubled lenders to grow at an accelerating rate this year. They claim that an uptick in commercial-real-estate losses will serve as the key culprit
But the real culprit - the one that regulators won't talk about publicly - is the funding scheme banks employ to load themselves up on speculative loans. T his scheme - far removed from most investor radar screens - has played a major role in the banking sector's growing woes, and will continue to contribute heavily to bank failures in years to come.
- The centerpiece to this risky strategy is a funding vehicle known officially as a "brokered deposit." However, due to the narcotic-like effects brokered deposits can have on a bank's balance sheet, industry insiders have adopted a more-appropriate moniker - referring to them as "hot money."