CHICAGO ( TheStreet) -- Illinois, which has more banks and thrifts than any other state, counts 71 institutions with "recommended" ratings of B-plus (good) or higher, according to a review by Ratings. But 11 of Illinois' 641 banks and savings and loan associations were weighed down with critically poor loan quality.

Illinois has had 17 institutions fail during the current credit crisis, trailing only Georgia, with 24 failures, and ahead of California, with 14, and Florida, with eight.

The most recent Illinois failure and the largest in the state during the crisis was Corus Bank of Chicago, closed by federal regulators on Sept. 11. Corus' deposits were sold by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. to MB Financial ( MBFI). (See's enhanced interactive Bank Failure Map for a detailed summary.)

Strongest Illinois Banks and Thrifts

In addition to 71 institutions rated B-plus or above in the second quarter, down from 75 in the previous quarter, the state has 37 banks and thrifts rated A- (excellent) or higher.

Illinois Banks and Thrifts Rated A- and Higher (in Millions of Dollars)
Source: SNL Financial Ratings uses a very conservative model to assign bank and thrift financial-strength ratings, placing the greatest weight on capital strength, credit quality and earnings stability.

Most of the highest-rated Illinois banks and thrifts were relatively small and had nonperforming asset ratios of less than 1%. Almost all had total risk-based capital ratios greatly exceeding the 10% required for most institutions to be considered well-capitalized under regulatory guidelines.

Largest Illinois Institutions

The following includes capital, earnings and asset-quality indicators.

10 Largest Illinois Banks and S&Ls (in Millions of Dollars)
Source: SNL Financial

The largest Illinois bank or thrift held by a publicly traded holding company is Northern Trust Co., a subsidiary of Northern Trust ( NTRS), with $62 billion in total assets. It achieved a return on equity of slightly less than 20% for the first quarter and was rated B (good).

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