Wells, Bank of America Completed Big Acquisitions

1 01 2009

Wells Fargo & Co. and Bank of America Corp. completed major acquisitions before the ball dropped on 2008.

Charlotte-based Bank of America has closed on its $19.4 billion purchase of Merrill Lynch & Co. of New York, making Bank of America the largest U.S. bank, with $2.7 trillion in assets.

And Wells has bought Charlotte-based Wachovia for $12.7 billion. The combined bank is the nation’s fourth-largest by assets. Together, Wells and Wachovia have more than 6,600 outlets in 39 states and Washington, D.C. Wells and Wachovia customers will immediately have free use of both banks’ ATMs.

San Francisco-based Wells agreed to buy Wachovia on Oct. 3, topping a bid by Citigroup Inc. for parts of Wachovia. In late September, regulators had pushed Wachovia to find a buyer. The Charlotte bank had struggled throughout the year, crippled in large part by housing loans it inherited through its 2006 acquisition of Golden West Financial Corp. of Oakland, Calif.

Wells says it expects to write down $71.4 billion in assets acquired from Wachovia.

Meanwhile, Bank of America has said it will cut 35,000 jobs in the next three years as it absorbs Merrill Lynch.

Source: Jacksonville Business Journal

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