SOURCE: The Bedford Report

The Bedford Report

April 08, 2011 08:16 ET

TARP Repayment Pivotal to Regional Banking Recovery

The Bedford Report Provides Analyst Research on Huntington Bancshares & Citizens Republic

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - Apr 8, 2011) - With much of the sector posting consistent profits as commercial real estate-related loan losses are easing, the number of Regional Banks still owing TARP money has shrunk considerably. Repaying TARP money leads to fewer capital constraints placed on the banks. In fact, the Fed explained that banks which have yet to repay the government bailout money received through the US Treasury Department's Troubled Assets Relief Program will not be allowed to increase their dividend payments. The Bedford Report examines the outlook for companies in the Regional Banking Sector and provides research reports on Huntington Bancshares, Inc (NASDAQ: HBAN) and Citizens Republic Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ: CRBC). Access to the full company reports can be found at:

www.bedfordreport.com/2011-04-HBAN

www.bedfordreport.com/2011-04-CRBC

A recent report from SNL Financial claims that as many as 142 smaller banks are deferring payment this quarter on the preferred dividends they owe to the Treasury as part of the TARP capital purchase program. These 142 smaller banks received $3.9 billion worth of TARP payments and have collectively deferred $198.8 million worth of dividends.

Citizens Republic is among those banks deferring payments. The Flint, Michigan-based institution has $300 million in bailout capital and has used that money to make more loans and buy mortgage-backed securities.

The Bedford Report releases regular market updates on the Regional Banking sector so investors can stay ahead of the crowd and make the best investment decisions to maximize their returns. Take a few minutes to register with us free at www.bedfordreport.com and get exclusive access to our numerous analyst reports and industry newsletters.

Last December, Huntington Bancshares finished paying back $1.4 billion in US bailout funds. The company's Chief Executive Officer Stephen Steinour said of the company's most recent quarter that "Credit quality again improved significantly, a trend we anticipate will continue. Importantly, we repaid our TARP capital and ended the quarter with strong regulatory capital and very strong common equity capital ratios."

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