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PL Capital is raising money for a new fund that'll target banks with up to $75 billion of assets, after 20 years of sticking to just community banks with less than $3 billion of assets. In this Q&A, Richard Lashley explains why activist investors are eyeing bigger banks now and how banks can avoid his kind.

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United Guaranty's spinoff from American International Group will result in changes to its capital structure that could shake up the competitive landscape in the private mortgage insurance market.

A pair of former BBCN directors said they resigned due to issues with the company's corporate governance and the leadership of Chairman and CEO Kevin Kim. BBCN claims the directors, who voted against its planned acquisition of Wilshire Bancorp, resigned after they were informed of plans to remove them from the board.

A rush of bank M&A is welcome news to activist investors, who typically make money when banks make improvements and sell to bigger institutions. Here is a look at six firms that have stood out in recent years for pressuring management teams and boards to enhance value for shareholders.

The company knew it would soon expand outside of Michigan, but management thought it might buy a $2 billion-asset bank based in Indiana. Talmer Bancorp was much bigger than that and it instead offered opportunity in Ohio.

It took several weeks, but deposit prices are inching up at a number of banks. Still, most increases will likely be minor until the Fed enacts more rate increases.
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The Oregon company is disinclined to pursue acquisitions or buy back stock anytime soon, though it remains open to opening offices in new markets if the numbers work out.

Talmer agreed to sell itself in a privately negotiated deal that values the company at 150% of its tangible book value. For some analysts and investors, the company should have considered an auction — or not selling at all.

C.K. Hong used his resignation letter to issue a scathing rebuke of the Los Angeles company's $1 billion acquisition, while claiming that he had been on a "dysfunctional board ... characterized by factionalism and a lack of transparency." BBCN strongly disagreed, claiming that Hong was upset that plans were already in place to remove him from the board.

BOK Financial in Oklahoma plans to further increase its reserves to cover loan losses amid the energy slump, emphasize health care and other non-energy sectors, and expand in markets like Kansas City that are less reliant on oil.

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