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National City taken out by PNC today

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Further consolidation in the banking industry today. National City was purchased by PNC today. Another infamous takeunder. NCC was trading at $2.75 at the close of business on Thursday. They were bought for $2.00/share.

If this consolidation continues, we'll just have one bank left. We'll call it THE BANK of US. :?

Should be interesting. I have a mortgage with Nat City and a platinum card with them with a $6k credit line. I absolutely loved NatCity. Fantastic online and over the phone mortgage servicing AND generous credit card lines. I hope PNC doesn't screw up the transfer.

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I've also loved dealing with National City, although I think everybody thought this was long overdue.

This merger is very interesting and a bit strange too, because they are (were) a much larger company than PNC, but they weren't strong enough to survive, should the market continue to erode.

The irony here is (and I'm speculating) that this acquisition happened largely because of the bailout plan. The way the plan was written NCC couldn't afford to writeoff the bad loans, because they would have had to mark down the entire portfolio. However, with the capital of PNC, they are able to dump almost $8 Billion of them and still maintain sufficient capital ratios on the books. Shareholders of both NCC/PNC wanted (needed?) the free government $$, and this was the easiest way to get a piece of that pie. NCC just released earnings last Tuesday, in which they outlined a pretty specific plan for the future, cut 4,000 jobs, integrate existing businesses, etc... that was just an elaborate smokescreen, apparently.

As for the credit cards, National City is (was) the 4th largest issuer of VISA cards in the country; PNC has a drastically smaller credit card operation. My feeling is that while the brand on the credit card might change, it will eventually be PNC's credit card customers who might notice a change in service, and not National City's. One would have to think that they keep National City's credit cards intact, changing account number and physical plastic, but little else... and move PNC onto National City's platform. (similar to Chase/First USA and BofA/FIA/MBNA)

As for the loans/deposits/brokerage/mortgage services, one would have to think that when a smaller company undertakes a larger company that, unless one of the companies has far superior technologies, they will need to build a whole new platform, as Chase did when they took over Bank One. Whether it is feasible for the new company to build that type of platform in this economy, I don't know.

In any event, there is significant overlap in the customer base and in the geographic locations. No matter how the cookie crumbles, it means thousands more jobs eliminated in the Midwest.

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