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Acquisitions Continue: Citi Buys Wachovia

This article was written by in Banking. 3 comments.


October 3 update: Wells Fargo has stepped in and placed a better offer for Wachovia.

Wachovia is my main brick-and-mortar bank. The bank has held my primary, though small, savings and checking accounts for about fifteen years. During this time, it hasn’t always been known as Wachovia to me due to a series of mergers and acquisitions. My accounts, which haven’t moved, were held at First Union National Bank, CoreStates National Bank, and New Jersey National Bank.

Soon, my bank will be Citibank. Citibank recently announced its plans to bail out Wachovia’s banking operations.

CitichoviaUntil now, I’ve managed to hold completely free accounts at Wachovia. While I’ve been charged fees for various reasons, perhaps mistakes on my part like allowing my savings account balance to dip below a minimum level, Wachovia has always refunded the charges. In fact, I’ve been quite happy with the bank’s customer service all around from the beginning.

If CitiBank does not offer a free option to correspond with my current Wachovia accounts once the acquisition and transition is complete, I will not hesitate to move my funds out of the bank. I have had some interesting experiences with CitiBank’s banking services — mostly on the business end — and I’m not anticipating the switch.

The new Wall Street Journal blog, The Wallet, has a couple of posts regarding the takeover that would be helpful to Wachovia customers like me, here and here. These are the major points:

  • Deposits insured by FDIC won’t be lost.
  • If you sell your Wachovia stock, which was at $3.50 per share as of last night, you can write off your losses against your stock gains for tax purposes.
  • Wachovia mortgages and student loans will become Citi’s assets along with bank accounts after December 31.

Updated October 3, 2008 and originally published October 1, 2008. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

avatar Nancy

I’ve been a Wachovia customer for more than 7 years (even while living off-shore) and after looking over Citi’s fees (from ATMs to using Quicken for Bill Pay), I’ve decided to start shopping for a new bank. I don’t want to pay Citi to use Quicken to pay my bills. I don’t want to pay Citi $1.50 to use the ATM at the grocery store. I want Wachovia! (But since I can’t have it, I’m working on a solution. I don’t want to be a victim of Citi’s high fees.)

On top of that, I’ve got my business banking at WaMu, and Bank of America is worse than Citi. UGH!

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