In the last quarter of 2008, the government's list of "problem" banks grew by 81 to a total of 252.
The Feds are hush-hush about whose name is on the list to prevent a run on the banks. So is there any other way for you to find out if your institution is safe and sound or on shaky ground? Luckily, there are a few sources for you to check:
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. site, fdic.gov, posts financial figures and data on specific banks under "Bank Find."
Or, if numbers give you a headache, check out companies that evaluate the figures and spit out an easy-to-understand rating. Ratings are posted online for free.
BauerFinancial at bauerfinancial.com uses a five-star system to rate banks. TheStreet.com Ratings assigns letter grades, which you can find by looking up its Banks & Thrifts Ratings tool at thestreet.com. And Bankrate.com gives out stars to institutions along with a report.
If your bank rates low, contact it to find out why. Ratings aren't foolproof. For instance, new banks tend to rate lower because they have less of a track record.
Lastly, you don't have to worry as long as your deposits are within federal insurance limits. The insurance limit has been temporarily raised, so the basic coverage is $250,000 through the end of the year.
Discuss this story and others in our talk forumsMost recent business talk forum topics:More news talk forums: Local | Nation/World | Business | Health/Science | Computers/Technology
Note: In-story commenting has been temporarily disabled due to technical issues. We are working to correct the issue and will bring back this feature in the future. In the meantime, please use our talk forums to discuss stories.