Weiss Ratings: Five of Six Latest Bank Closings Identified as “Weak” by Weiss More Than a Year Ago

JUPITER, Florida (December 20, 2010) — On Friday, regulators closed six banks: First Southern Bank, Batesville, Arkansas; United Americas Bank, Atlanta, Georgia; Appalachian Community Bank, FSB, McCaysville, Georgia; The Bank of Miami, NA, Coral Gables, Florida; Chestatee State Bank, Dawsonville, Georgia and Community National Bank, Lino Lakes, Minnesota. The total number of U.S. bank and thrift failures now stands at 157 for the year. Florida and Georgia lead the nation with 29 and 21 closings respectively, representing nearly one third of the country's total bank failures for the year.

First Southern Bank, Batesville, Arkansas, north of Little Rock, with assets of $156.7 million at June 30, 2010 had been rated C- ("Fair") for the previous three quarters by Weiss Ratings and was first identified as "Fair" in January 2010 based on third quarter 2009 data. The bank reported a profit of $356 thousand through June 30, 2010. First Southern's Tier 1 and Risk-Based Capital ratios were declining from the previous quarter at 9.17% and 12.18%, respectively through June 30, 2010. The bank had insufficient loan loss reserves to cover nonperforming assets.

United Americas Bank located in Atlanta, Georgia, with assets of $263 million as of June 30, 2010 had been rated E- ("Very Weak") for the last quarter by Weiss Ratings and was first identified as "Weak" in October 2009 based on second quarter 2009 data. The bank reported a loss of $899 thousand through June 30, 2010. United Americas had weakening capital ratios below its peers with Tier 1 Capital at 5.61% and Risk-Based Capital of 8.27% through the second quarter of 2010. Nonperforming loans represented almost 16% of its loan portfolio.

Appalachian Community Bank located in McCaysville, Georgia, north of Atlanta, with assets of $89.8 million, as of June 30, 2010 had been rated E- ("Very Weak") for the four quarters by Weiss Ratings and was first identified as "Weak" in October 2009 based on second quarter 2009 data. The bank reported a loss of $3 million through June 30, 2010. Appalachian had weakening capital ratios and well below its peers with Tier 1 Capital at 3.25% and Risk-Based Capital of 6.61% through the second quarter of 2010. Nonperforming loans made up 29.3% of its loan portfolio with charge offs at 6.24% for the second quarter ended, June 30, 2010. The Bank of Miami, NA, Coral Gables, Florida, with assets of almost $490 million at June 30, 2010 had been rated E- ("Very Weak") for the previous two quarters by Weiss Ratings and was first identified as "Weak" in March 2009 based on fourth quarter 2008 data. The bank reported a loss of $15.7 million through June 30, 2010. The bank also had below-FDIC-mandated Tier 1 and Risk-Based Capital ratios of 3.88% and 6.44%, respectively. Nonperforming loans made up almost 20% of its loan portfolio and charge-offs of just over 6% through June 30, 2010.

Chestatee State Bank, Dawsonville, Georgia, north of Atlanta, with assets of $258 million as of June 30, 2010 had been rated E- ("Very Weak") for the last seven quarters by Weiss Ratings and was first identified as "Weak" in March 2008 based on fourth quarter 2007 data. The bank reported a loss of $4.1 million through June 30, 2010. Chestatee had weakening capital ratios that were well below FDIC-acceptable levels and well below its peers with Tier 1 Capital at 3.46% and Risk-Based Capital of 5.50% through the second quarter of 2010. Nonperforming loans represented 20.5% of its loan portfolio with charge offs at 3.34% of average loans for the quarter ended June 30, 2010.

Community National Bank, Lino Lakes, Minnesota, just north of Minneapolis-St. Paul, with assets of $34.3 million at June 30, 2010 had been rated D- ("Weak") for the previous six quarters by Weiss Ratings and was first identified as "Weak" in July 2009 based on first quarter 2009 data. The bank reported a loss of $1 million through June 30, 2010. The bank also had weakening Tier 1 of 9.70% and insufficient loan loss reserves to cover poor performing loans. Nonperforming loans made up almost 7% of its loan portfolio and charge-offs of 1.8% through June 30, 2010

Weiss Ratings, the nation's independent provider of bank and insurance company ratings, accepts no payments for its ratings from rated institutions. It also distributes independent ratings on the shares of thousands of publicly traded companies, mutual funds, closed-end funds and ETFs.

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