First Republic Bank Corporation
First Republic Bank Corporation was a bank that failed in 1988, during the savings and loan crisis. The company first opened as the Guaranty Bank and Trust Company in 1920, founded by a University of Texas law school alumnus named Eugene DeBogory. In 1922 when Guaranty obtained a national charter it assumed the name Republic National Bank of Dallas. When the company began servicing farm and ranch loans, it was required to establish a Texas subsidiary, Republic Trust and Savings Bank, to comply with regulations governing national banks at the time. In 1928 the regulations changed, allowing the state-chartered Republic Trust and Savings Bank to be merged back into the parent company, forming the Republic National Bank and Trust Company.
During the next decade Republic acquired North Texas National Bank, and invested in several other Texas banks during the banking crisis of the 1933. In 1938 the name changed again back to Republic National Bank of Dallas. By 1948 Republic had grown to become the largest bank in Texas. In the 1980s, toward the tail end of a lengthy period of expansion and acquisition, Republic acquired the Houston National Bank and held a substantial portfolio of loans to the real estate industry in Texas.
In the late 1980s Savings and Loan crisis, Texas in general and Republic's loan portfolio in particular was hit hard by real estate devaluation. In efforts to remain solvent Republic merged with Interfirst Bank, also based in Dallas, resulting in the First Republic Bank Corporation. The combined First Republic Bank was unable to weather the downturn and was shuttered within a year, in what was at the time the largest bank failure in US history. In 1989-1990 NCNB Corporation acquired First Republic from the FDIC, and in 1991 changed its name to NationsBank.
Seidel, Jeff, Handbook of Texas Online, s.v., http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/RR/cor1.html, retrieved 2007-08-20
New York Times, July 29, 1989. Texas Monthly, May 1974. U.S. News and World Report, August 15, 1988. Who's Who in the South and Southwest, Vol 2. H. Harold Wineburgh, The Texas Banker: The Life and Times of Fred Farrel Florence (Dallas, 1981).
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