Articles

Nervous banks cut off some borrowers, tighten reins on others

Local companies that rely on credit have seen their borrowing power shrink and in some cases disappear as a deep freeze
in the nation’s credit markets drives fears of a broad economic slowdown. A handful of businesses, including
a Greenwood security firm and an Indianapolis contractor, already have shut down after credit dried up,
and others are on the ropes as troubled banks seek to limit their loan exposure.

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Lender claims M&I Plaza when it fails to sell at auction

A Maryland company has taken ownership of downtown’s 28-story M&I Plaza just three months before a major tenant departure
leaves the skyscraper 70-percent vacant. The new owner is CapitalSource Inc., a commercial finance and investment firm based
in Chevy Chase, Md. It had been a lender to the former owner, which defaulted.

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First Indiana sells bank

Indiana’s largest locally based bank, First Indiana Corp., decided to end 92 years of independence in 2007, agreeing in July
to sell itself to Milwaukee-based Marshall & Ilsley Corp. for $529 million in cash, or $32 a share.

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Banks squeeze into Hamilton County

At least 35 new bank branches have sprouted in Hamilton County in the last three years, and more are on the way. Familiar
names like Charter One and Chase have added eight and seven branches, respectively. Other institutions are entering the market.

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Local sign makers enjoy brisk business thanks to bank mergers

Bank mergers have proven lucrative for local sign companies over the years. A string of mergers in the late 1980s and early
1990s wiped out the city’s three big national banks–American Fletcher, Merchants National and Indiana National. In the years
since, the industry has continued to consolidate, spawning a flurry of additional name changes.

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