SEATTLE (AP) Regional bank Washington Federal has repaid the $200 million it received in federal bailout money.

Spokeswoman Cathy Cooper says the funds were wired Wednesday to the U.S. Treasury.

Chief Executive Roy Whitehead said in a statement that the money it received in November in exchange for preferred stock only made a challenging business more difficult. He said investors viewed it as debt and the public saw it as a bailout, while Congress added costly restrictions.

During the six months it was in the Troubled Asset Relief Program, Seattle-based Washington Federal paid $5.4 million in dividends to the Treasury.

Washington Federal Inc., the parent company of Washington Federal Savings, operates 150 offices in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, Texas and New Mexico.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.