Virginia banks have exposure to Freddie, Fannie bailouts

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Community banks are more affected by the government takeover of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae than originally thought, and that includes Virginia-based banks. Gateway Financial of Virginia Beach, which said it would lose $40 million in preferred stock from Freddie and Fannie, has merged with Norfolk-based Bank of Hampton Roads. This makes it the region’s largest bank. The American Banker Association polled banks last weekend and reported that 27 percent of banks will lose between $15 billion and $17 billion in Freddie and Fannie losses. The group said Virginia has the fifth-highest number of exposed banks in the country. (Daily Press)

The Richmond area will lose almost 500 jobs with the loss of Reynolds Wrap aluminum foil. Reynolds Consumer Products said it would close its aluminum foil operations in Richmond by mid-2009 because of an increase in foreign competition. The company has said it will move some of the local manufacturing to other U.S. locations. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

Agriculture and forestry operations contribute $79 billion to the state’s economy, making it the state’s largest industries, according to an economic impact study. Agriculture contributes $55 billion to the economy while forestry adds $23 billion each year, according to the Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service. (Richmond Times-Dispatch)

The U.S. Army is likely to announce on Monday it will move 6,400 jobs originally slated for Fort Belvoir to Alexandria instead of the Springfield location Northern Virginia officials had lobbied for. The Springfield site is located within a half-mile of a Metro and Virginia Railway Express stations. But Army officials believe the Springfield site would not be ready to be open by the September 2011 deadline. (The Washington Post

The Virginia Department of Transportation will receive a $32 million bonus from the federal government for allocating its federal transportation dollar efficiently. The money will be used toward the Metrorail extension to Washington Dulles International Airport, Virginia Railway Express, replacing the Gilmerton bridge in Hampton Roads and maintenance projects. (The Washington Post

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