Do You Even Know Your Bank Anymore?

It’s no secret that there has been a ton of consolidation in the banking industry, more notably before the financial meltdown.

mb-201102piggybankWhen I lived in my condo a couple of cities away, there was one branch of a bank that seemed to be going through a buyout every year or so.  You could almost make a pastime out of watching a new sign get installed before the new one was even a year or two old!

My wife and I were at dinner a couple of days ago, and actually started talking about “What bank did this used to be?” I had no real idea how Chase entered the Detroit market, and there are other banks that I had no real idea how they got there.  She’s kept up on it more than I have, so we were pretty much able to piece together how the various banking institutions that grace our brick & mortar banks have come to be.

There’s only one bank (Comerica) that has stayed ‘the same’ for decades on end.  They’ve forever been part of buyout rumors for as long as I can remember, and I sort of dropped them off my radar when they decided to abandon move their headquarters from Michigan to Texas a few years back, leaving Detroit with no major bank headquarters.

It just shows that in the financial industry, very few things stay the same.  In fact, my dad has expressed frustration numerous times as his financial advisor seems to be sending him statements on different letterhead every quarter.  Even those firms are constantly buying one another, merging, separating to where nobody can keep track of it.

Oh, the fun.  But, on the bright side, at least the companies making signs are able to keep a good business flowing!

3 thoughts on “Do You Even Know Your Bank Anymore?”

  1. Hi,

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  2. The flip answer is take the best deal! The change we are seeing is banks are changing their fees and we will be paying the bill. I have been with my bank over 35 years, but no increases yet. I am afraid to switch, because my one trump card is my longevity. I do have an alternative, I am a member of a credit union. I guess I am watching and waiting how this will affect me.

  3. Credit Unions Rock! Well, I AM somewhat partial because I work for one. Although CU's are not immune to takeovers/mergers. However any mergers need to be approved by the CU members, not stockholders. I have heard of the rare occasion where a merger was not approved by the masses. But typically for the CU's, it's to better the bottom line and make it better for the members who have their money there, rather than the shareholders of a bank. Even my CU has had talk of mergers and offers, but it was always decided that it wasn't in the best interest of our membership at the time. I'm just glad that the CU I've worked for almost 8 years has been around since 1936 and plans on being around for many more years.

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