Talk about timing. On Friday, the 13th, four banks closed, bringing the total of banks to close in 2009 to thirteen. The banks that closed were:

Riverside Bank of the Gulf Coast based in Cape Coral, Florida;

Corn Belt Bank and Trust Company, based in Pittsfield, Illinois;

Pinnacle Bank, based in Beaverton, Oregon;

Sherman County Bank, based in Loup City, Nebraska

Each of these banks was taken over by another banking entity, so at least people’s accounts were saved, although they would have been saved anyway because of FDIC, so it’s not the worst of deals, but that’s not the real issue. These weren’t big time banks such as Citibank or Wachovia. These were local banks, which are usually more stable and usually don’t get into the kind of trouble larger banks do because their lending practices are usually more practical.

Last year 25 banks were closed, though many others were in trouble, and it’s being predicted that by the end of this year the number of banks that will close will be double last year, which would be higher than the 43 banks that closed back in 1993, following the fiscal policies of President Bush number one. Not pointing fingers, just similarities.

The best thing about these days is that your money is safe sitting in banks, as long as you have less than $100,000 sitting in there. Even if another bank takes yours over, you still have access to your bank. One of my wife’s credit cards was at a bank that’s recently been taken over, and making the online payment still went seamlessly and smoothly. So, if you’re still looking to save money in a bank, you should feel secure in knowing that your money will still be your money. These days, it’s still a safer investment than the stock market, but I’m hoping that will turn around by summer.