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Important Update: Changes in FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage

The FDIC deposit insurance rules have undergone a series of changes starting in the fall of 2008. As a result, certain previously published information related to FDIC insurance coverage may not reflect the current rules. For details about the changes, visit Changes in FDIC Deposit Insurance Coverage. For more information about FDIC insurance, go to www.fdic.gov/deposit/deposits/index.html or call toll-free 1-877-ASK-FDIC (1-877-275-3342). For the hearing-impaired, the number is 1-800-925-4618.

Summer 2006 – Start Smart: Money Management for Teens

The FDIC—Who We Are and Why You Should Know About Us

You probably know something about the FDIC from your parents or teachers, our signs at banks around town, or perhaps radio ads from banks that end with the familiar words "member FDIC." But how much do you really know about what the FDIC does and how we protect you and your family?

The FDIC—that's short for Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation—is part of the U.S. government. The FDIC was created by Congress in 1933 after a terrible economic period called "The Great Depression" when thousands of banks shut down and families and businesses all across America lost money they had deposited in those banks.

The FDIC's primary job is to make sure that, if a bank is closed, all of the bank's customers will get their deposits back—including any interest they've earned—up to the insurance limit under federal law.

In the 70-plus years since the start of the FDIC, we have responded to about 3,000 bank failures, and we are proud to say that no depositor has lost a single penny of insured money.

"FDIC insurance means that you don't have to worry about whether your money will be safe," said FDIC Chief Economist Richard A. Brown. And by protecting depositors, he noted, FDIC insurance also gives people the confidence to keep their money in banks, and that's good for the community. "Banks make this money available to other people, in the form of loans, so they can buy a home, pay for college or start a business," Brown explained.

But there is more to the FDIC than being ready to protect depositors from bank failures. For example, the FDIC also is one of five federal regulators of banking institutions in the U.S., and together they make sure that these institutions operate safely (which helps prevent bank failures) and obey certain consumer protection laws (such as those ensuring that people are treated fairly when they apply for a loan).

To learn more about the FDIC, start at our Web site—www.fdic.gov.

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Last Updated 08/18/2006

communications@fdic.gov