From IndyMac's failure to fallout from the GSEs' seizure, from a look at an "unprecedented year" to thoughts on what's to come, here are our 10 most read stories of the year.

IndyMac Fails

OTS cites Schumer's letters as a 'cause' of a run on the thriftAmerican Banker | Jul 11WASHINGTON — Regulators took over $32 billion-asset IndyMac Bancorp late Friday, the largest thrift failure in history and the second largest collapse of any insured institution.

FDIC Defends Handling of IndyMac Run

Agency pins blame on 'inflammatory' media coverageAmerican Banker | Jul 18WASHINGTON — Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. officials defended the agency Thursday against charges it has improperly handled the failure of IndyMac Bancorp Inc., stirring concerns among depositors nationwide.

Paulson Plan Hits Speed Bumps

Lawmakers, industry raise questions with $700B buyout facilityAmerican Banker | Sep 21WASHINGTON — It took only a few hours after its release for industry representatives and lawmakers to begin raising significant questions about the Treasury Department's legislative proposal to create a facility that would buy and hold up to $700 billion in troubled assets.

Regulators Sell Wamu to JPMorgan at No Cost to DIF

American Banker | Sep 26WASHINGTON — Federal regulators shut down $307 billion-asset Washington Mutual Bank, the largest failure in American history, late Thursday, selling its assets and deposits to JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Government Seizes Fannie, Freddie

Treasury, FHFA announce GSE bailoutAmerican Banker | Sep 7WASHINGTON — Capping months of speculation over the health and viability of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government took control of both government-sponsored enterprises Sunday in an effort to soothe the housing and financial sectors.

For Smaller Banks, Plan Presents a Mixed Picture

American Banker | Oct 15The Treasury Department's plan to buy stakes in small and regional banks is expected to attract strong interest from hobbled banks struggling to raise capital and perhaps healthy banks that could use the funds to acquire weaker competitors.

Preferred Exposure Fallout

Smallest banks may face major decisionsAmerican Banker | Sep 9It remains unclear to what extent community banks and thrifts might suffer after they write down investments in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac preferred stock.Year in Review

When It Seemed Things Couldn’t Get Worse …

American Banker | Dec 5"Unprecedented" was a common qualifier used to describe the operating environment for the nation's biggest banks this year.Review '08/Preview '09

Big-Bank Troubles, Small-Bank Opportunity

American Banker | Dec 16While now is hardly the time for optimistic forecasts, next year could present community banks with unprecedented opportunities to add customers, loans, and talent as larger rivals repair balance sheets and integrate mergers.

Vanguard Handily Weathers Storm Under New CEO

American Banker | Dec 17Most executives wouldn't consider themselves "fortunate" if they took over one of the largest fund companies weeks before an historic market collapse. But then, most executives aren't taking over Vanguard Group at a time when investors are moving assets to low-cost index funds.

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