More U.S. banks are in danger of failing, even after receiving aid from the federal government, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday. The economy has done little to improve the financial conditions of many struggling institutions, leaving 98 bailed-out banks without the capital to lift themselves out of the at-risk category, according to the Journal.

That's a 15% increase from the second quarter, when 86 of the banks that had received funds from the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, were considered at risk.

Taxpayers have spent more than $2.7 billion in TARP funds on seven banks that nonetheless already have failed, while the 98 at-risk banks have together received more than $4.2 billion, the Journal reported. A Government Accountability Office report in October said that many of the failed banks should have been red flagged for their already precarious financial position during the application process.

About 10% of the country's 7,760 banks are undercapitalized, up from about 9% during the second quarter, a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. spokesman told the Journal.

Last month, a report released by the Congressional Budget Office forecast that TARP will end up costing taxpayers about $25 billion, down from the $50 billion estimated in October.


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