Happy New Year! Here's a look at what's news in banking and finance this morning:
- Bank of America is cutting off lines of credit to some small business customers, the Los Angeles Times reports, straining their finances.
- Last year, fully 30 percent of private loan modifications included a principal write-down as banks -- including Bank of America -- navigate the mortgage melt-down, NPR says.
- Fewer banks failed in 2011 than in the previous two years, but the Wall Street Journal says the "era of troubled banks" is not over. Data indicate that banks are only failing more slowly.
- A Reuters columnist explores why some banks make dumb decisions. His hypothesis: it's their size.