KeyCorp's third-quarter loss widened on continued increases in loan-loss provisions, write-downs of real-estate related investments and write-offs as the Ohio regional bank's credit woes mounted. Results were weaker than expected.

Although some big banks have been posting strong results for the most recent period, regional banks don't have the same level of capital-markets activity to offset weak traditional banking, which will remain under pressure until serious improvement in the economy and joblessness.

In years past, Cleveland-based KeyCorp skirted the subprime-mortgage market and its bust, but it wasn't as skillful in sidestepping commercial real-estate financing in overheated markets.

The company posted a loss of $397 million, or 52 cents a share, compared with a year-earlier loss $36 million, or 10 cents a share, a year earlier. Revenue decreased 8.7% to $981 million.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected a loss of 41 cents on revenue of $1.11 billion

KeyCorp's tangible common equity ratio, which measures how much of a bank's hard assets its common shareholders actually own, was 7.58%, up from 6.29% a year earlier and 7.35% in the previous quarter. The Tier 1 capital ratio, a key measure of financial strength, rose to 7.63%% from 5.58% and 7.36%, respectively.

Loan-loss provisions were $733 million, more than doubling from a year earlier, although they were down 11% from the second quarter. Net charge-offs grew 3.59% of average loans from continuing operations from 1.28% and 2.93%, respectively. Nonperforming assets climbed 4.46%, up from 1.69% and 3.77%.

Deposits grew 5.1% from a year earlier and 0.5% sequentially.

KeyCorp shares closed Tuesday at $6.54 and weren't active premarket. The stock, which is up 49% from a 25-year low last summer, remains down 23% in 2009.

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