Friday, May 4, 2012
The news was surprising to customers of Plantation Federal Bank on Friday. That’s when federal regulators announced the bank had failed and would reopen Monday as First Federal, the Charleston-based bank that acquired the assets as part of a deal organized by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. As of Monday, the three bank branches in Pawleys Island, Murrells Inlet and Myrtle Beach are operating under the new name.
The transition which took place at the end of the day Friday was overseen by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency. Employees learned the news at about the same time it was made public.
Plantation Federal, with about $486 million in assets and $440 million in deposits, has been working for nearly two years to improve its finances. One step it took was selling its branch in Georgetown to Citizens Bank.
In a statement released after the takeover was announced, Plantation Federal officials said “while we ultimately were unable to sustain the bank in the face of unyielding market conditions, your board of directors worked tirelessly over the last two years on behalf of the company and the shareholders to attempt every reasonable solution.”
Plantation Federal is the 21st bank in the United States to fail this year.
Representatives from First Federal have been on hand at the banks this week to help customers understand the changes and to answer any questions they may have. Otherwise, bank officials say, it has been business as usual at the branches.
Customers have maintained access to their accounts through the transition and can call 1-800-640-2538 if they have questions.