Federal regulators have eased restrictions for private investors seeking to buy failed banks, as the tally of collapsed institutions mounts.
The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.'s board voted 4-1 in a public meeting to revise the rules it proposed last month in a way that lessens the amount of cash that private equity funds must maintain in the banks they acquire.
In the new policy, the minimum capital requirement was reduced to 10 percent of the bank's assets from 15 percent.
Eighty-one banks have failed so far this year. The closings have drained billions from the FDIC deposit insurance fund, which insures regular bank accounts up to $250,000 and is financed with fees paid by U.S. banks.