IndyMac Seized by U.S. Regulators Amid Cash Crunch
July 11 (Bloomberg) -- IndyMac Bancorp Inc. became the second-biggest federally insured financial company to be seized by U.S. regulators after a run by depositors left the California mortgage lender short on cash.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. will run a successor institution, IndyMac Federal Bank, starting next week, the Office of Thrift Supervision said in an e-mailed statement today. Customers will have access to funds this weekend via automated teller machines. Regulators intend to eventually sell the company.
The Pasadena, California-based lender specialized in so- called Alt-A mortgages, which didn't require borrowers to provide documentation on their incomes. IndyMac's home state, where Countrywide Financial Corp. was also located before it was bought last week, has been among the hardest hit by foreclosures.
"Given their focus on Alt-A and a heavy concentration in California, they would have suffered meaningful losses in almost any scenario,'' Brian Horey, president of Aurelian Management LLC in New York, said before the seizure was announced. Aurelian is short-selling IndyMac shares to gain from declines.
Had IndyMac "applied some common sense and changed their approach to underwriting as the housing market peaked, they might have lived to see the next cycle,'' Horey said.
IndyMac came under fire last month from U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, who said lax lending standards and deposits purchased from third parties left it on the brink of failure. In the 11 business days after Schumer explained his concerns in a June 26 letter, depositors withdrew more than $1.3 billion, the OTS said.
... whether it's fair or not, the Bush Administration will be blamed for this - Tiger