As we reported the other day, the so-called $700 billion bank "bailout" money is going to healthy, not ailing banks, under the government's newest plan, with seven Washington banks receiving $793 million of that money. A Treasury Department spokesperson told us they review financial records to
determine which institutions are in good shape before inviting them to
apply for funds.
But then, it's a government program, so believe nothing. Proof? The biggest state recipient of the oxymoronic healthy-bailout program was Sterling Financial of Spokane, receiving $303 million after claiming to be on solid financial footing.
Yesterday, about two months after getting the funds, Sterling said it was in trouble. All of its 2008 profit has been wiped out and it will halt cash dividends until further notice.
The irony: Sterling now seems to qualifying for a bailout under the original government plan. But, now that the bank could be failing, the changed program likely can't help further. Great plan everyone.