Insurers buy up tiny banks to gain access to rescue funds

11/18/2008 | Wall Street Journal, The

Life insurance companies in the U.S. have been acquiring small banks and thrifts in an effort to obtain some of the government's rescue funds. Lincoln National, Genworth Financial and Hartford Financial Services Group have all announced plans to purchase small financial institutions so they can transform themselves into savings-and-loan holding companies. The developments may lead to significant changes in the way the insurance industry is regulated.

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