Fri., April 16, 2010 3:48pm (EDT)

Bank Official Says NYT Got It Wrong
By Josephine Bennett
Updated: 4 years ago

ATLANTA  —  
A Georgia banking official says the New York Times got it wrong in an op-ed piece this week about the state’s troubled banks.

The article, called, "Georgia on My Mind” said Georgia’s status as the nation’s leader in failed banks resulted from small banks making sub-prime and predatory loans.

Joe Brannen with the Georgia Bankers Association says that’s not true and responded with a letter of his own published in the Times.

“There’s not a community bank in Georgia that I’m aware of that has ever made a sub-prime loan and never once have they been accused of being predatory lenders.”

Brannen says most of the 37 failed banks lost money on loans made to builders, developers and contractors. By 2007 nearly 14-thousand people a month were moving to Georgia and buying homes. Brannen says in 2008 that growth practically ended overnight.