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Number of US banking failures surges through the 100 mark

THE number of US banks going bust has passed 100 this year, the highest rate of failure in 17 years.<br /><br />The subprime crisis continues to wreak havoc, with US regulators shutting seven more banks over the weekend. Three banks in Florida alone were wound up bringing the total of failed lenders to 106 in 2009, the most failures since the savings and loan crisis of 1992 brought 179 institutions to their knees. US institutions have suffered &pound;1.1 trillion (&pound;675m) in credit losses and writedowns since 2007 when the subprime mortgage bubble collapsed. Bank failures have cost regulator the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation $25bn this year. <br /><br />The most high-profile banking failure was Lehman Brothers but many banks on the list are small, deposit-taking institutions.