As is so often the case, the good news didn't make the headlines.
While banking news in recent weeks was dominated by troubling news from Cyprus, the U.S. banking system quietly finished the first quarter of 2013 on track to having its most stable year since before the 2008 financial crisis.
That financial crisis taught many bank customers not to take anything for granted, and the troubles in Cyprus are the latest reminder of that lesson. Still, for the time being at least, U.S. bank customers can take some comfort in the steady improvement of this country's banking system, while Europe's has not yet contained the contagion that has spread financial trouble from one country to another.
U.S. banks show vast improvement
The FDIC reported that only four U.S. banks failed in the first quarter of 2013. With more than 7,000 FDIC-insured banks on the books, some occasional failures are inevitable, but the first quarter's pace would put banks on track for just 16 failures in 2013, which would be the lowest amount of failures since 2007.To put this in perspective, bank failures peaked at 157 in 2010, and 51 banks failed last year. Against that backdrop, the slow pace of failures this year represents a real return to stability for the U.S. banking system.