NEW YORK (
) -- The
Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
has received bids for three under-capitalized banks based in Puerto Rico, according to a published report.
While FDIC spokesman Greg Hernandez said the FDIC's bidding process was "highly confidential," the
Wall Street Journal
reported Thursday that agency's bidding deadline passed on Tuesday for interested parties to put in offers for
Westernbank Puerto Rico
, a unit of
W. Holding Company
R-G Premier Bank
, which is held by
of San Juan, a
subsidiary of EuroBancshares
According to the Journal, bidders have included Popular Inc.
(BPOP - Get Report)
, which holds
Banco Popular Puerto Rico
of San Juan and
Banco Popular North America
of New York;
Oriental Financial Group
(OFG - Get Report)
Banco Santander SA
, the Spanish bank that holds
Banco Santander Puerto Rico
, along with
of Wyomissing, Pa., one of the largest U.S. thrifts, with $74 billion in total assets.
The table below provides a snapshot of the financial condition of the ten biggest banks in Puerto Rico, based on asset size, as of Dec. 31. Of the institutions listed, eight were
considered well capitalized
at the end of 2009 according to the regulatory guidelines that apply to most banks. The exceptions were R-G and EuroBank, since those institutions had total risk-based capital ratios below the 10% threshold.:
Most of the Puerto Rico institutions had nonperforming asset ratios that greatly exceeded the national aggregate of 3.31% reported by the FDIC. Nonperforming assets include loans past due 90 days or in nonaccrual status, along with repossessed real estate.
Despite the high level of nonperformers, loan losses hadn't yet come to a head for most of the Puerto Rico institutions. Only three institutions had net charge-offs for 2009 exceeding the national aggregate of 2.89%.
Still, six of the institutions posted net losses for 2009, mainly from elevated loan loss provisions as they anticipated coming loan losses.
Written by Philip van Doorn in Jupiter Fla.