For the fourth quarter of 2009, nonperforming assets decreased from the prior quarter by $289 million for KeyCorp in Cleveland, Ohio, for the first time since the fourth quarter of 2006.

Most of the reduction came from nonperforming loans held for sale and a decrease in nonaccrual loans in the commercial portfolio, resulting from the charge-off of two large commercial real estate related relationships in the real estate capital and corporate banking services line of business within the national banking group.

As a result of increased loan losses, write-downs of commercial real estate related investments, the provision for losses on lending-related commitments and costs associated with other real estate owned, at the end of the quarter, allowance for loan losses was $2.5 billion up from $1.6 billion one year ago.

For the full year, Key had a net loss from continuing operations of $1.581 billion compared to a net loss of $1.337 billion for 2008.

CEO Henry L. Meyer III said during the fourth quarter the company saw improvement in its credit metrics, including decreases in delinquencies, nonperforming loans and nonperforming assets.

"Our allowance for loan losses stood at 4.31% of total loans and 116% of nonperforming loans at December 31." At Dec. 31, nonperforming loans totaled $2.2 billion.

Nonperforming assets totaled $2.5 billion and represented 4.25% of portfolio loans, OREO and other nonperforming assets, compared to 4.46% at September 30, 2009, and 2.00% at December 31, 2008.

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