TheBancorp, the Wilmington- and Philadelphia-based company run by former Jefferson Bank chief Betsy Zubrow Cohen, is buying bankrupt Chicago subprime lender American Home Bank, as my colleague Harold Brubaker wrote in yesterday's Inquirer here.

Why? "To enhance our platform and regulatory structure," for Bancorp's prepaid cards and private-client business, Cohen said in announcing the deal.

New York financial reporter Teri Buhl, quoting unnamed sources, speculates in this story that TheBancorp may be "parking" American's charter for a big investor like steel magnate-turned-financial company bargain-hunter Wilbur Ross. TheBancorp has worked creatively with Drexel University and other institutions in need of a charter in the past, so it might not be out of character. We hope to know more soon.