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JAY LENO BACK ON NBC MONDAY

When does Jay Leno's new show start?

Jay Leno, who ended his 17-year run on The Tonight Show May 29, returns to NBC on Monday. Leno will break new ground for network television in hosting the same show in prime time (10 p.m.) Monday through Friday. Such shows with hosts like Oprah Winfrey have been a staple of daytime television for years.

The new show, to be broadcast from Leno's longtime studio in Burbank, Calif., will not be a variety show. It is expected to continue many of the features of Leno's Tonight Show, including his opening monologue.

While Leno is expected to draw a salary of more than $30 million a year, producing his show will cost much less than different drama series each night in the same time slot.

According to a Los Angeles Times article, the cost of producing Leno's new show will be less than $2 million per week, while NBC paid Warner Brothers Television almost twice that per episode of E.R.

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Friday shutdowns limit mess

It seems that every Saturday I see an article saying some bank failed on Friday night. Why is it almost always Fridays when banks go bust? And when the FDIC takes over a failed bank, what does it do during the weekend to make sure the bank opens on Monday?

Most banks are closed or have limited hours on the weekend, so banks are typically shut down on a Friday to limit disruption for customers. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is in charge of the failed bank's assets, and usually has a buyer in place prior to the bank being shut down.

Over the weekend, a team from the FDIC works with the employees of the failed bank to secure its assets and merge the failed bank with the acquiring institution.

One of the FDIC's initial tasks is shutting down the bank's Web site and putting up a temporary site to inform customers about the failure. The FDIC and the acquiring bank also need to get up to speed with any major loans that are scheduled to close, or with any impending foreclosures or ongoing legal proceedings.

Customers still have access to their money through ATMs, checks and credit cards, but the bank's branches are usually closed until Monday.

Occasionally, a bank might be too unstable for regulators to wait until the weekend to shut it down, but those instances have been rare, said David Barr, a spokesman for the FDIC.

Washington Mutual Inc., the largest bank ever to fail, was seized by regulators on a Thursday a year ago as the Seattle-based savings bank crumbled under the weight of its enormous bad bets on the mortgage market. JPMorgan Chase & Co. bought WaMu's banking assets for $1.9 billion.

More than 80 federally insured banks have failed in 2009. As a point of comparison, about 4,000 failed in one year during the Great Depression.

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