FDIC May Have Claim Against WaMu

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp may have “significant claims” against bankrupt savings and loan Washington Mutual Inc (WAMUQ.PK: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), it said in court documents on Monday.

In documents filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware, the FDIC said it wanted to protect any rights it may have to recover money from a $4.4 billion in deposits Washington Mutual is seeking to regain control of from JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

The FDIC was appointed as a receiver for Washington Mutual Bank on Sept. 25, and immediately sold off many of its assets to JPMorgan for $1.9 billion.

The holding company filed for bankruptcy on Sept. 26, and one of the first issues in the case has been the status of the cash deposits.

JPMorgan agreed earlier this month to allow WaMu’s parent company to access $707 million in deposits it held at Washington Mutual Bank and $3.7 billion it held at the bank’s subsidiaries.

The FDIC did not make any specific claim against WaMu in the court documents, but said that once the facts of the case have been established, it may.

“There are several potential bases for the FDIC, as regulator and receiver, to have an interest in the funds,” it said in the court documents.

The money could eventually be used to pay back creditors of the bankrupt parent company as well as the FDIC, if needed. (Reporting by Emily Chasan and Chelsea Emery; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)