Bank of America inches closer to rival Citigroup

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWhy these photogenic dumplings are popping up in Los AngelesWhere Citi’s tentacles spread to everything from high-fee asset management to global investment banking, Bank of America has remained focused squarely on the consumer. The strategy flourished as international markets soured and global merger activity waned, but some doubt it will work in the long run as overseas markets remain primed for growth. Citigroup is still the biggest U.S. financial services company based on assets of $1.63 trillion, the most common yardstick. The New York-based heavyweight, built through an acquisition spree orchestrated by former chairman Sanford Weill, is one of Wall Street’s biggest players with operations in more than 100 countries. BofA – with $1.45 trillion of assets – is America’s largest retail bank with almost 6,000 branches coast to coast. Through various deals, it has acquired stakes in three foreign banks, some credit card assets abroad and spent $675 million building trading platforms in Asia and Europe. The company’s international exposure still remains significantly less than many of its bigger competitors. How Bank of America got there is one of the most colorful and controversial stories in American banking history. McColl, a brash ex-Marine, led North Carolina regional player NationsBank Corp. through some 70 acquisitions since the early 1980s. The company moved in a rapid-fire fashion to new parts of the country. Its push into Florida in 1981 was famously coined “Operation Overlord” after the Normandy invasion in World War II. But McColl’s biggest coup was the acquisition of BankAmerica Corp., a financial institution bigger than NationsBank. He adopted the San Francisco-based bank’s name, moved the headquarters to Charlotte, ousted its CEO and began placing his executives into top positions as the two banks integrated. Although the $57 billion deal was the biggest in McColl’s career, his competitive nature still kept at least some focus on being able to best his bigger competitor. “In the early and midpart of my career, I spent time looking up at Citibank, and ultimately realized them as a competitor in many of the retail areas,” said McColl, who founded an advisory firm in his retirement and spends his time dedicated to charities such as Habitat for Humanity. “If we eventually are larger than Citigroup, we’d be happy about that,” the 71-year-old said. McColl contends that successor Kenneth Lewis should be credited for keeping BofA focused on Main Street consumers rather than forge an international franchise. Lewis, 59, could not be reached for comment. BofA has been able to leapfrog Citi by adding branches through its acquisition of FleetBoston Financial Corp., and becoming the nation’s biggest credit-card issuer with its purchase of MBNA Corp. The company is so steeped as America’s bank that it processes more checks annually than the Federal Reserve, and its tellers handle 1 billion face-to-face transactions per day.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! NEW YORK – There’s a legend on Wall Street that Hugh L. McColl Jr., Bank of America Corp.’s storied former chairman, used to keep an “enemies list” tucked into his pocket – marching orders for who the bank must topple to become the biggest in the nation. On top of that list: Citigroup Inc., then the world’s largest financial institution whose stock market value consistently dwarfed that of BofA. By McColl’s retirement in 2001, Citigroup’s market value was twice that of the once-small North Carolina bank. Often disputed, even by McColl himself, the story demonstrates the ferocity behind the company’s 25-year quest to be No. 1. This week, the Charlotte-based bank took a psychological step toward that goal – coming within 1 percent of overtaking Citigroup in market value. Citi has a market cap of about $237 billion, while BofA is valued at $233 billion. “Everyone’s heard about the enemies list, but whether it’s true or not doesn’t matter,” said Hoefer & Arnett analyst Richard X. Bove, who has tracked BofA since its infancy. “McColl didn’t have to have an enemies list. They had a strategy, and one that was deployed effectively and has paid off.” last_img read more

Premier League gameweek 15: How the top flight table could change

first_imgIt’s the most wonderful time of the year when football is on almost every day for the month of December, so we’re back at it again in the Premier League.We’ve got 10 games to cast our eyes over and they could really shake up the table. Ronaldo warned Lukaku how hard scoring goals in Serie A would be before Inter move 7 Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won Arsenal players passionately celebrated Lucas Torreira’s goal against Spurs 7 MONEY Arsenal players passionately celebrated Lucas Torreira’s goal against Spurs Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury 7 Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars With several teams in the relegation battle getting vital wins in recent weeks, any positive results could really alter the outlook in the bottom half of the division.Meanwhile, it’s a similar story at the top with not only Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham swapping places regularly but the likes of Everton, Manchester United, Watford, Leicester City, and Bournemouth, too. 16. Cardiff CityHighest possible position – 14thLowest possible position – 20th15. Newcastle UnitedHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 19th ADVICE Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card getty images – getty Leicester City stars Jamie Vardy and James Maddison celebrate scoring against Watford shining 7 huge blow 10. WatfordHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 11th9. BournemouthHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 11th8. Leicester CityHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 11th 7 Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions REPLY center_img Florin Andone nets the winner for Brighton Latest Football Stories But how can the Premier League table look at the end of gameweek 15? Using data from, reveals the highest and lowest potential position for each team at the end of this round of fixtures.You can see the results, below…20. FulhamHighest possible position – 16thLowest possible position – 20th19. BurnleyHighest possible position – 14thLowest possible position – 20th18. SouthamptonHighest possible position – 14thLowest possible position – 20th17. Huddersfield TownHighest possible position – 14thLowest possible position – 20th Brighton came from behind to beat 10-man Huddersfield 2-1 on Saturday Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’ West Ham ended Newcastle’s good run 14. Crystal PalaceHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 19th13. West HamHighest possible position – 11thLowest possible position – 15th12. Wolverhampton WanderersHighest possible position – 11thLowest possible position – 13th11. Brighton and Hove AlbionHighest possible position – 8thLowest possible position – 13th REVEALED 7. Manchester UnitedHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 10th6. EvertonHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 10th 5. TottenhamHighest possible position – 3rdLowest possible position – 5th4. ArsenalHighest possible position – 3rdLowest possible position – 5th 7 BEST OF no dice Forbes list reveals how much Mayweather, Ronaldo and Messi earned this decade Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Gylfi Sigurdsson has been in fine form for Everton this season REVEALED RANKED 3. Chelsea Highest possible position – 3rdLowest possible position – 5th2. LiverpoolHighest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 2nd 7 7 Liverpool players celebrate with match-winner Divock Origi 1. Manchester CityHighest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 2ndlast_img read more