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Most Oklahoma banks repay federal TARP money

Only one state bank that took federal bank support money in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis has failed to pay back what it owes. And that bank, SpiritBank of Bristow, has pledged to repay the $30 million.
by Don Mecoy Published: August 25, 2012

Four of the five Oklahoma banks that accepted federal money doled out under the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis have repaid those funds.

The lone exception, SpiritBank of Bristow, has proposed repaying the $30 million investment by the U.S. Treasury “through a different payment structure,” said Joyce Madewell, SpiritBank executive vice president of marketing.

However, the Treasury plans to liquidate all of its Capital Purchase Program investments as soon as possible, Madewell said, “which would preclude the payment of this over time as proposed.”

A regulator directed SpiritBank's parent company to defer dividend payments on the preferred stock held by the U.S. Treasury under the Capital Purchase Program, Madewell said.

SpiritBank, which has written off some bad loans and booked some losses, agreed earlier this year to reduce the bank's size to boost its capital position and increase the amount of money set aside for problem loans and assets.

Dudley Gilbert, Oklahoma Banking Department deputy commissioner, said SpiritBank “is progressing along with the terms of the agreement.”

Serving its purpose

This month, Southwest Bancorp, the parent of Stillwater National Bank, repaid the $70 million it owed the Treasury.

Southwest Bancorp CEO Rick Green said the federal money imposed some burdens on the company but allowed the bank to maintain its strong capital position while coping with liquidity issues and loans that went sour.

“We believe that the purpose for which it was intended worked very favorably for us,” Green said of TARP.

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by Don Mecoy
Business Editor
Business Editor Don Mecoy has covered business news for more than a decade after earlier working on The Oklahoman's city, state and metro news desks, including a stint as city editor. He has won state and regional journalism awards for business,...
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