The big Cincinnati bank that gobbled up Old Kent for a song, funded the biggest toxic dumping scandal in River City's history, eliminated over three thousand jobs locally, and alienated thousands of customers has appeared to have lost its groove. Fifth Third Bancorp, which had run up its stock price through a running-on-water strategy of continually buying up smaller banks so that the dust would never settle look enough for anyone to see how well the organization was really doing, now seems stuck in decline since the feds nailed it two years ago for improprieties in the acquisition of Old Kent.
This was confirmed by Fifth Third's announcement that second-quarters profits have declined by seven percent. CEO George Schaefer that the bank face some serious challenges that are not ameliorated by the difficult interest rate market. Well, it all of Fifth Third's troubles really were Greenspan's fault, don't you think all the banks would be in the same soup? It's past time for Schaefer to acknowledge that Fifth Third's go-go days are over and that bank needs to become a responsible company.