BANK OF AMERICA CORPORATION (abbreviated as BOFA) is a multinational
banking and financial services corporation headquartered in Charlotte,
North Carolina . It is ranked 2nd on the list of largest banks in the
United States by assets. As of 2016,
Bank of America was the 26th
largest company in the United States by total revenue. In 2016, it was
ranked #11 on the
Forbes Magazine Global 2000 list of largest
companies in the world.
Its acquisition of
Merrill Lynch in 2008 made it the world's largest
wealth management corporation and a major player in the investment
banking market. As of December 31, 2016, it had US$ 886.148 billion
in assets under management (AUM).
As of December 31, 2016, the company held 10.73% of all bank deposits
in the United States. It is one of the Big Four banks in the United
States , along with
JPMorgan Chase and
Wells Fargo —its
Bank of America operates—but does not
necessarily maintain retail branches —in all 50 states of the United
District of Columbia
District of Columbia and more than 40 other countries. It
has a retail banking footprint that serves approximately 46 million
consumer and small business relationships at 4,600 banking centers and
15,900 automated teller machines (ATMs).
Bank of America provides its products and services through 4,600
retail financial centers, approximately 15,900 automated teller
machines , call centers, and online and mobile banking platforms. Its
Consumer Real Estate Services segment offers consumer real estate
products comprising fixed and adjustable-rate first-lien mortgage
loans for home purchase and refinancing needs, home equity lines of
credit, and home equity loans.
Bank of America has been the subject of many lawsuits and
investigations regarding both mortgages and financial disclosures
dating back to the financial crisis , including a record settlement of
$16.65 billion on August 21, 2014.
* 1 History
* 1.2 Expansion in
* 1.3 Expansion outside
* 1.4 Merger of Nations
Bank and BankAmerica
* 1.5 2001 to present
* 1.5.1 Acquisition of
* 1.5.2 Acquisition of
* 1.5.3 Federal Troubled
Asset Relief Program
* 1.5.4 Bonus settlement
* 1.5.5 Fraud
* 1.5.6 Downsizing (2011 to 2014)
* 1.5.7 Sale of stake in China Construction
* 1.5.8 $17 billion settlement with Justice Department
* 1.5.9 DOD Community
* 1.6 Introduction of Erica
* 2 Operations
* 2.1 Consumer Banking
* 2.2 Global Banking
* 2.3 Global Wealth and Investment Management
* 2.4 Global Markets
* 2.5 Offices
* 2.5.1 International offices
* 3 Charitable efforts
* 4 Lawsuits
* 5 Controversies
* 5.2 Consumer credit controversies
* 5.4 Anonymous
* 5.5 Mortgage business
* 5.6 Accounts of Iranians frozen
* 5.7 Investment in mountaintop removal
* 6 Notable buildings
* 6.1 Former buildings
* 7 See also
* 8 References
* 9 Further reading
* 10 External links
BANK OF ITALY
Italy (United States)
The history of
Bank of America dates back to October 17, 1904, when
Amadeo Pietro Giannini founded the
Italy in San Francisco. The
Italy served the needs of many immigrants settling in the
United States at that time, providing services denied to them by the
existing American banks which typically discriminated against them and
often denied service to all but the wealthiest. Giannini was raised
by his mother and stepfather Lorenzo Scatena, as his father was
fatally shot over a pay dispute with an employee. When the 1906 San
Francisco earthquake struck, Giannini was able to save all deposits
out of the bank building and away from the fires. Because San
Francisco's banks were in smoldering ruins and unable to open their
vaults, Giannini was able to use the rescued funds to commence lending
within a few days of the disaster. From a makeshift desk consisting of
a few planks over two barrels, he lent money to those who wished to
In 1922, Giannini established
Bank of America and
Italy . In 1986,
Bank AG acquired 100% of Banca d'America e d'Italia, a bank
established in Naples in 1917 following the name-change of Banca
dell'Italia Meridionale with the latter established in 1918. In 1918
another corporation, Bancitaly Corporation, was organized by A. P.
Giannini, the largest stockholder of which was Stockholders Auxiliary
Corporation. This company acquired the stocks of various banks located
in New York City and certain foreign countries.
In 1928 Giannini merged his bank with
Bank of America, Los Angeles ,
Orra E. Monnette
Orra E. Monnette and consolidated it with other bank
holdings to create what would become the largest banking institution
in the country.
Italy was renamed on November 3, 1930 to Bank
of America National Trust and Savings Association , which was the only
such designated bank in the United States of America at that time.
Giannini and Monnette headed the resulting company, serving as
EXPANSION IN CALIFORNIA
Branch banking was introduced by Giannini shortly after 1909
California that allowed for branch banking in the
state. Its first branch outside San Francisco was established in 1909
in San Jose. By 1929, the bank had 453 banking offices in California
with aggregate resources of over US$1.4 billion. There is a replica
of the 1909
Italy branch bank in History Park in San Jose, and
Italy Building is an important downtown landmark.
Giannini sought to build a national bank, expanding into most of the
western states as well as into the insurance industry, under the aegis
of his holding company,
Transamerica Corporation . In 1953, regulators
succeeded in forcing the separation of
Transamerica Corporation and
Bank of America under the
Clayton Antitrust Act
Clayton Antitrust Act . The passage of the
Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 prohibited banks from owning
non-banking subsidiaries such as insurance companies.
Bank of America
and Transamerica were separated, with the latter company continuing in
the insurance business. However, federal banking regulators prohibited
Bank of America's interstate banking activity, and
Bank of America's
domestic banks outside
California were forced into a separate company
that eventually became
First Interstate Bancorp
First Interstate Bancorp , later acquired by
Wells Fargo and Company in 1996. It was not until the 1980s with a
change in federal banking legislation and regulation that
America was again able to expand its domestic consumer banking
activity outside California.
New technologies also allowed credit cards to be linked directly to
individual bank accounts. In 1958, the bank introduced the
BankAmericard, which changed its name to Visa in 1977. A consortium
California banks introduced Master Charge (now
to compete with BankAmericard.
EXPANSION OUTSIDE CALIFORNIA
Following the passage of the
Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 ,
BankAmerica Corporation was established for the purpose of owning and
Bank of America and its subsidiaries.
Bank of America expanded outside
California in 1983 with its
Seafirst Corporation of
Seattle , Washington , and its
wholly owned banking subsidiary, Seattle-First National Bank. Seafirst
was at risk of seizure by the federal government after becoming
insolvent due to a series of bad loans to the oil industry.
BankAmerica continued to operate its new subsidiary as Seafirst rather
Bank of America until the 1998 merger with NationsBank.
BankAmerica experienced huge losses in 1986 and 1987 by the placement
of a series of bad loans in the
Third World , particularly in Latin
America. The company fired its CEO, Sam Armacost. Though Armacost
blamed the problems on his predecessor, A.W. (Tom) Clausen , Clausen
was appointed to replace Armacost. The losses resulted in a huge
decline of BankAmerica stock, making it vulnerable to a hostile
First Interstate Bancorp
First Interstate Bancorp of Los Angeles (which had
originated from banks once owned by BankAmerica), launched such a bid
in the fall of 1986, although BankAmerica rebuffed it, mostly by
selling operations. It sold its FinanceAmerica subsidiary to Chrysler
and the brokerage firm Charles Schwab and Co. back to Mr. Schwab . It
Bank of America and
Italy to Deutsche
Bank . By the time of
the 1987 stock market crash , BankAmerica's share price had fallen to
$8, but by 1992 it had rebounded mightily to become one of the biggest
gainers of that half-decade. The
Bank of America Tower in New
BankAmerica's next big acquisition came in 1992. The company acquired
California rival, Security Pacific Corporation and its subsidiary
Security Pacific National
California and other banks in
Oregon , and Washington (which Security Pacific had
acquired in a series of acquisitions in the late 1980s). This was, at
the time, the largest bank acquisition in history. Federal regulators,
however, forced the sale of roughly half of Security Pacific's
Washington subsidiary, the former Rainier
Bank , as the combination of
Seafirst and Security Pacific Washington would have given BankAmerica
too large a share of the market in that state. The Washington branches
were divided and sold to West One Bancorp (now
U.S. Bancorp ) and
Bank . Later that year, BankAmerica expanded into Nevada by
Bank of Nevada.
In 1994, BankAmerica acquired the Continental
Illinois National Bank
and Trust Co. of Chicago, which had become federally owned as part of
the same oil industry debacle emanating from Oklahoma City's Penn
Square Bank, that had brought down numerous financial institutions
including Seafirst. At the time, no bank possessed the resources to
bail out Continental, so the federal government operated the bank for
nearly a decade.
Illinois at that time regulated branch banking
extremely heavily, so
Bank of America
Illinois was a single-unit bank
until the 21st century. BankAmerica moved its national lending
department to Chicago in an effort to establish a financial beachhead
in the region. Pyramid-shaped former
Bank of America branch
building towers over
Interstate 410 in
San Antonio ,
These mergers helped BankAmerica Corporation to once again become the
largest U.S. bank holding company in terms of deposits, but the
company fell to second place in 1997 behind North Carolina's
Bank Corporation , and to third in 1998 First
On the capital markets side, the acquisition of Continental Illinois
helped BankAmerica to build a leveraged finance origination and
distribution business (Continental
Illinois had extensive leveraged
lending relationships) which allowed the firm's existing
broker-dealer, BancAmerica Securities (originally named BA
Securities), to become a full-service franchise. In addition, in
1997, BankAmerica acquired
Robertson Stephens , a San
Francisco–based investment bank specializing in high technology for
Robertson Stephens was integrated into BancAmerica
Securities and the combined subsidiary was renamed BancAmerica
MERGER OF NATIONSBANK AND BANKAMERICA
Logo of the former
Bank of America (BA), 1969–1998
Bank of America lent
D. E. Shaw & Co. , a large hedge fund ,
$1.4 billion in order to run various businesses for the bank.
However, D.E. Shaw suffered significant loss after the 1998 Russia
bond default . BankAmerica was acquired by Nations
Bank of Charlotte
in October 1998 in what was the largest bank acquisition in history at
Bank was the nominal survivor, the merged bank took the
better-known name of
Bank of America. Hence, the holding company was
Bank of America Corporation, while NationsBank, N.A. merged
Bank of America NT"> Typical
Bank of America local office in
In 2001, McColl stepped down and named Ken Lewis as his successor.
Bank of America announced it would purchase Boston-based
FleetBoston Financial for $47 billion in cash and stock. By
Bank of America, all of its banks and branches were given
Bank of America logo. At the time of merger, FleetBoston was the
seventh largest bank in United States with $197 billion in assets,
over 20 million customers and revenue of $12 billion. Hundreds of
FleetBoston workers lost their jobs or were demoted, according to The
Boston Globe .
On June 30, 2005,
Bank of America announced it would purchase credit
MBNA for $35 billion in cash and stock. The Federal Reserve
Board gave final approval to the merger on December 15, 2005, and the
merger closed on January 1, 2006. The acquisition of
Bank of America a leading domestic and foreign credit card issuer. The
Bank of America Card Services organization, including the
former MBNA, had more than 40 million U.S. accounts and nearly $140
billion in outstanding balances. Under
Bank of America the operation
was renamed FIA Card Services.
Bank of America footprint
Bank of America operated under the name
BankBoston in many other
Latin American countries, including Brazil. In 2006,
Bank of America
sold BankBoston's operations to Brazilian bank Banco Itaú, in
exchange for Itaú shares. The
BankBoston name and trademarks were not
part of the transaction and, as part of the sale agreement, cannot be
Bank of America (ending the
In May 2006,
Bank of America and
Banco Itaú (Investimentos Itaú
S.A.) entered into an acquisition agreement through which Itaú agreed
to acquire BankBoston's operations in Brazil and was granted an
exclusive right to purchase
Bank of America's operations in
Uruguay . The deal was signed in August 2006 under which Itaú agreed
Bank of America's operations in
Chile and Uruguay. Prior
to the transaction, BankBoston's Brazilian operations included asset
management, private banking, a credit card portfolio, and small,
middle-market, and large corporate segments. It had 66 branches and
203,000 clients in Brazil.
Chile had 44 branches and
58,000 clients and in
Uruguay it had 15 branches. In addition, there
was a credit card company, OCA, in Uruguay, which had 23 branches.
BankBoston N.A. in Uruguay, together with OCA, jointly served 372,000
clients. While the
BankBoston name and trademarks were not part of the
transaction, as part of the sale agreement, they cannot be used by
Bank of America in Brazil,
Uruguay following the
transactions. Hence, the
BankBoston name has disappeared from Brazil,
Chile and Uruguay. The Itaú stock received by
Bank of America in the
transactions has allowed
Bank of America's stake in Itaú to reach
11.51%. Banco de Boston de Brazil had been founded in 1947.
On November 20, 2006,
Bank of America announced the purchase of The
United States Trust Company for $3.3 billion, from the Charles Schwab
Corporation . US Trust had about $100 billion of assets under
management and over 150 years of experience. The deal closed July 1,
On September 14, 2007,
Bank of America won approval from the Federal
Reserve to acquire LaSalle
Bank Corporation from
ABN AMRO for $21
billion. With this purchase,
Bank of America possessed $1.7 trillion
in assets. A Dutch court blocked the sale until it was later approved
in July. The acquisition was completed on October 1, 2007. Many of
LaSalle's branches and offices had already taken over smaller regional
banks within the previous decade, such as Lansing and Detroit based
The deal increased
Bank of America's presence in
Illinois , Michigan
Indiana by 411 branches, 17,000 commercial bank clients, 1.4
million retail customers, and 1,500 ATMs.
Bank of America became the
largest bank in the Chicago market with 197 offices and 14% of the
deposit share, surpassing
JPMorgan Chase .
Bank and LaSalle
Bank Midwest branches adopted the
America name on May 5, 2008.
Ken Lewis, who had lost the title of Chairman of the Board, announced
that he would retire as CEO effective December 31, 2009, in part due
to controversy and legal investigations concerning the purchase of
Brian Moynihan became President and CEO effective
January 1, 2010, and afterward credit card charge offs and
delinquencies declined in January.
Bank of America also repaid the $45
billion it had received from the Troubled Assets Relief Program.
Acquisition Of Countrywide Financial
On August 23, 2007, the company announced a $2 billion repurchase
Countrywide Financial . This purchase of preferred stock
was arranged to provide a return on investment of 7.25% per annum and
provided the option to purchase common stock at a price of $18 per
On January 11, 2008,
Bank of America announced that it would buy
Countrywide Financial for $4.1 billion. In March 2008, it was
reported that the
Federal Bureau of Investigation
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was
investigating Countrywide for possible fraud relating to home loans
and mortgages. This news did not hinder the acquisition, which was
completed in July 2008, giving the bank a substantial market share of
the mortgage business, and access to Countrywide's resources for
servicing mortgages. The acquisition was seen as preventing a
potential bankruptcy for Countrywide. Countrywide, however, denied
that it was close to bankruptcy. Countrywide provided mortgage
servicing for nine million mortgages valued at $1.4 trillion as of
December 31, 2007.
This purchase made
Bank of America Corporation the leading mortgage
originator and servicer in the U.S., controlling 20–25% of the home
loan market. The deal was structured to merge Countrywide with the
Red Oak Merger Corporation, which
Bank of America created as an
independent subsidiary. It has been suggested that the deal was
structured this way to prevent a potential bankruptcy stemming from
large losses in Countrywide hurting the parent organization by keeping
Countrywide bankruptcy remote .
Countrywide Financial has changed its
Bank of America Home Loans . Chart showing the trajectory
of BOA share value and transaction volume during the 2007-2009
In December 2011, the Justice Department announced a $335 million
Bank of America over discriminatory lending practice
at Countrywide Financial.
Eric Holder said a federal
probe found discrimination against qualified
Latino borrowers from 2004 to 2008. He said that minority borrowers
who qualified for prime loans were steered into higher-interest-rate
subprime loans .
Acquisition Of Merrill Lynch
On September 14, 2008,
Bank of America announced its intention to
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. in an all-stock deal worth
approximately $50 billion.
Merrill Lynch was at the time within days
of collapse, and the acquisition effectively saved Merrill from
bankruptcy. Around the same time
Bank of America was reportedly also
in talks to purchase
Lehman Brothers , however a lack of government
guarantees caused the bank to abandon talks with Lehman. Lehman
Brothers filed for bankruptcy the same day
Bank of America announced
its plans to acquire Merrill Lynch. This acquisition made
America the largest financial services company in the world. Temasek
Holdings , the largest shareholder of
Merrill Lynch ">'" and "our
investigation of these and other matters pursuant to New York's Martin
Act will continue." Congressman Kucinich commented at the same time
that "This may not be the last fine that
Bank of America pays for how
it handled its merger of Merrill Lynch." A federal judge, Jed Rakoff
, in an unusual action, refused to approve the settlement on August 5.
A first hearing before the judge on August 10 was at times heated,
and he was "sharply critic" of the bonuses. David Rosenfeld
represented the SEC, and Lewis J. Liman, son of
Arthur L. Liman ,
represented the bank. The actual amount of bonuses paid was $3.6
billion, of which $850 million was "guaranteed" and the rest was
shared amongst 39,000 workers who received average payments of
$91,000; 696 people received more than $1 million in bonuses; at least
one person received a more than $33 million bonus.
On September 14, the judge rejected the settlement and told the
parties to prepare for trial to begin no later than February 1, 2010.
The judge focused much of his criticism on the fact that the fine in
the case would be paid by the bank's shareholders, who were the ones
that were supposed to have been injured by the lack of disclosure. He
wrote, "It is quite something else for the very management that is
accused of having lied to its shareholders to determine how much of
those victims’ money should be used to make the case against the
management go away," ... "The proposed settlement," the judge
continued, "suggests a rather cynical relationship between the
parties: the S.E.C. gets to claim that it is exposing wrongdoing on
the part of the
Bank of America in a high-profile merger; the bank's
management gets to claim that they have been coerced into an onerous
settlement by overzealous regulators. And all this is done at the
expense, not only of the shareholders, but also of the truth."
While ultimately deferring to the SEC, in February 2010, Judge Rakoff
approved a revised settlement with a $150 million fine "reluctantly",
calling the accord "half-baked justice at best" and "inadequate and
misguided". Addressing one of the concerns he raised in September, the
fine will be "distributed only to
Bank of America shareholders harmed
by the non-disclosures, or 'legacy shareholders', an improvement on
the prior $33 million while still "paltry", according to the judge.
Case: SEC v.
Bank of America Corp., 09-cv-06829, United States
District Court for the Southern District of New York .
Investigations also were held on this issue in the United States
House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform , under chairman
Edolphus Towns (D-NY) and in its investigative Domestic Policy
Subcommittee under Kucinich.
In 2010, the bank was accused by the U.S. government of defrauding
schools, hospitals, and dozens of state and local government
organizations via misconduct and illegal activities involving the
investment of proceeds from municipal bond sales. As a result, the
bank agreed to pay $137.7 million, including $25 million to the
Internal Revenue service and $4.5 million to state attorney general,
to the affected organizations to settle the allegations.
Former bank official Douglas Campbell pleaded guilty to antitrust,
conspiracy and wire fraud charges. As of January 2011, other bankers
and brokers are under indictment or investigation.
On October 24, 2012, the top federal prosecutor in
Manhattan filed a
lawsuit alleging that
Bank of America fraudulently cost American
taxpayers more than $1 billion when
Countrywide Financial sold toxic
Fannie Mae and
Freddie Mac . The scheme was called
'Hustle', or High Speed Swim Lane. On May 23, 2016 the Second U.S.
Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the finding of fact by the jury
that low quality mortgages were supplied by Countrywide to Fannie Mae
Freddie Mac in the "Hustle" case supported only "intentional
breach of contract," not fraud. The action, for civil fraud, relied on
provisions of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and
Enforcement Act . The decision turned on lack of intent to defraud at
the time the contract to supply mortgages was made.
Downsizing (2011 To 2014)
Bank of America began conducting personnel reductions of
an estimated 36,000 people, contributing to intended savings of $5
billion per year by 2014.
In December 2011,
Bank of America's financial health
91st out of the nation's largest 100 banks and thrift institutions.
Bank of America cut around 16,000 jobs in a quicker fashion by the
end of 2012 as revenue continued to decline because of new regulations
and a slow economy. This put a plan one year ahead of time to
eliminate 30,000 jobs under a cost-cutting program, called Project New
BAC. In the first quarter of 2014 Berkshire bank purchased 20
America branches in Central and eastern New York for 14.4 million
dollars. The branches were from Utica/Rome region and down the Mohawk
Valley east to the capital region.
In April and May 2014,
Bank of America sold two dozen branches in
Huntington Bancshares . The locations were converted to
Bank branches in September.
As part of its new strategy
Bank of America is focused on growing its
mobile banking platform. As of 2014,
Bank of America has 31 million
active online users and 16 million mobile users. Its retail banking
branches have decreased to 4,900 as a result of increased mobile
banking use and a decline in customer branch visits.
Sale Of Stake In China Construction Bank
Bank of America acquired a 9% stake in China Construction
Bank , one of the Big Four banks in China , for $3 billion. It
represented the company's largest foray into China's growing banking
Bank of America has offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai, and
Guangzhou and was looking to greatly expand its Chinese business as a
result of this deal. In 2008,
Bank of America was awarded Project
Finance Deal of the Year at the 2008 ALB Hong Kong Law Awards. In
Bank of America announced plans to divest most of its
stake in the China Construction Bank.
In September 2013,
Bank of America sold its remaining stake in the
Bank for as much as $1.5 billion, marking the
firm's full exit from the country.
$17 Billion Settlement With Justice Department
In August 2014,
Bank of America agreed to a near-$17 billion deal to
settle claims against it relating to the sale of toxic mortgage-linked
securities including subprime home loans, in what was believed to be
the largest settlement in U.S. corporate history. The bank agreed with
the U.S. Justice Department to pay $9.65 billion in fines, and $7
billion in relief to the victims of the faulty loans which included
homeowners, borrowers, pension funds and municipalities. Real estate
economist Jed Kolko said the settlement is a "drop in the bucket"
compared to the $700 billion in damages done to 11 million homeowners.
Since the settlement covered such a substantial portion of the market,
he said for most consumers "you're out of luck."
Much of the government's prosecution was based on information
provided by three whistleblowers - Shareef Abdou (a senior vice
president at the bank), Robert Madsen (a professional appraiser
employed by a bank subsidiary) and Edward O'Donnell (a Fannie Mae
official). The three men received $170 million in whistleblower
DOD Community Bank
Bank of America has formed a partnership with the United States
Department of Defense creating a newly chartered bank DOD COMMUNITY
BANK ("Community Bank") providing full banking services to military
personnel at 68 branches and ATM locations on U.S. military
Guantanamo Bay Naval Base
Guantanamo Bay Naval Base
Diego Garcia ,
Kwajalein Atoll ,
South Korea , the
Netherlands and the
United Kingdom . It should be noted that even
Bank of America operates Community
Bank customer services are
not interchangeable between the two financial institutions, meaning a
Bank customer cannot go to a
Bank of America branch and
withdraw from their account and vice versa. Deposits made into
checking and savings accounts are insured by the Federal Deposit
Insurance Corporation up to $250,000 despite the fact that none of
Community's operating branches are located within the jurisdictional
borders of the United States.
INTRODUCTION OF ERICA
At the Money 20/20 conference in October 2016, retail banking
president Thong Nguyen introduced a digital assistant called Erica,
whose name comes from the bank name. Starting in 2017, customers will
be able to use voice or text to communicate with Erica and get advice,
check balances and pay bills. Unlike the people who work for the bank,
Erica will be available 24/7. Digital banking head Michelle Moore said
the technology was designed to help customers do a better job of
Forrester analyst Peter Wannemacher says bank customer experiences
with the technology have been "uneven or poor," but
Bank of America
intends to adapt Erica as needed.
Bank of America branch in
Bank of America generates 90% of its revenues in its domestic market.
The core of
Bank of America's strategy is to be the number one bank in
its domestic market. It has achieved this through key acquisitions.
Consumer Banking, the largest division in the company, provides
financial services to consumers and small businesses including,
banking, investments and lending products including business loans,
mortgages, and credit cards. It provides for investing online through
its electronic trading platform , Merrill Edge. The consumer banking
division represented 38% of the company's total revenue in 2016. The
company earns revenue from interest income, service charges, and fees.
The company is also a mortgage servicer . It competes primarily with
the retail banking arms of America's three other megabanks: Citigroup
JPMorgan Chase , and
Wells Fargo . The Consumer Banking organization
includes over 4,600 retail financial centers and approximately 15,900
automated teller machines .
Bank of America is a member of the
Global ATM Alliance , a joint
venture of several major international banks that provides for reduced
fees for consumers using their ATM card or check card at another bank
Global ATM Alliance when traveling internationally. This
feature is restricted to withdrawals using a debit card and users are
still subject to foreign currency conversion fees, credit card
withdrawals are still subject to cash advance fees and foreign
currency conversion fees.
Bank of America Tower , located on
Laura Street in Jacksonville
The Global Banking division provides banking services, including
investment banking and lending products to businesses. It includes the
businesses of Global Corporate Banking, Global Commercial Banking,
Business Banking, and Global Investment Banking. The division
represented 22% of the company's revenue in 2016.
Bank of America's acquisition of
Merrill Lynch , the Global
Corporate and Investment Banking (GCIB) business operated as Banc of
America Securities LLC. The bank's investment banking activities
operate under the
Merrill Lynch subsidiary and provided mergers and
acquisitions advisory, underwriting , capital markets, as well as
sales & trading in fixed income and equities markets. Its strongest
groups include Leveraged Finance ,
Syndicated Loans , and
mortgage-backed securities . It also has one of the largest research
Wall Street .
Bank of America
Merrill Lynch is headquartered
in New York City.
GLOBAL WEALTH AND INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT
The Global Wealth and Investment Management (GWIM) division manages
investment assets of institutions and individuals. It includes the
Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management and U.S. Trust
and represented 21% of the company's total revenue in 2016. It is
among the 10 largest U.S. wealth managers. It has over $2.5 trillion
in client balances. GWIM has five primary lines of business: Premier
Bank of America volunteers at the Los Angeles LGBT pride
parade in 2011
In 2007, the bank offered employees a $3,000 rebate for the purchase
of hybrid vehicles. The company also provided a $1,000 rebate or a
lower interest rate for customers whose homes qualified as energy
efficient. In 2007,
Bank of America partnered with Brighter Planet to
offer an eco-friendly credit card, and later a debit card, which help
build renewable energy projects with each purchase. In 2010, the bank
completed construction of the 1
Bank of America Center in Charlotte
center city . The tower, and accompanying hotel, is a LEED-certified
Bank of America has also donated money to help health centers in
Massachusetts and made a $1 million donation in 2007 to help homeless
shelters in Miami.
In 1998, the bank made a ten-year commitment of $350 billion to
provide affordable mortgage, build affordable housing, support small
business and create jobs in disadvantaged neighborhoods.
In 2004, the bank pledged $750 billion over a ten-year period for
community development lending and affordable housing programs.
In August 2011,
Bank of America was sued for $10 billion by American
International Group . Another lawsuit filed in September 2011
pertained to $57.5 billion in mortgage-backed securities
America sold to
Fannie Mae and
Freddie Mac . That December,
America agreed to pay $335 million to settle a federal government
Countrywide Financial had discriminated against Hispanic
African-American homebuyers from 2004 to 2008, prior to being
acquired by BofA. In September 2012, BofA settled out of court for
$2.4 billion in a class action lawsuit filed by BofA shareholders who
felt they were misled about the purchase of
Merrill Lynch .
On February 9, 2012, it was announced that the five largest mortgage
Bank of America, Citi, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells
Fargo) agreed to a historic settlement with the federal government and
49 states. The settlement, known as the National Mortgage Settlement
(NMS), required the servicers to provide about $26 billion in relief
to distressed homeowners and in direct payments to the states and
federal government. This settlement amount makes the NMS the second
largest civil settlement in U.S. history, only trailing the Tobacco
Master Settlement Agreement . The five banks were also required to
comply with 305 new mortgage servicing standards. Oklahoma held out
and agreed to settle with the banks separately.
On October 24, 2012, American federal prosecutors filed a $1 billion
civil lawsuit against
Bank of America for mortgage fraud under the
False Claims Act , which provides for possible penalties of triple the
damages suffered. The government asserted that Countrywide , which was
Bank of America, rubber-stamped mortgage loans to risky
borrowers and forced taxpayers to guarantee billions of bad loans
Fannie Mae and
Freddie Mac . The suit was filed by Preet
Bharara , the United States attorney in
Manhattan , the inspector
FHFA and the special inspector for the Troubled Asset
Relief Program . In March 2014,
Bank of America settled the suit by
agreeing to pay $6.3 billion to
Fannie Mae and
Freddie Mac and to buy
back around $3.2 billion worth of mortgage bonds.
In April 2014, the
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)
Bank of America to provide and estimated $727 million in
relief to consumers harmed by practices related to credit card add-on
products. According to the Bureau, roughly 1.4 million customers were
affected by deceptive marketing of add-on products and 1.9 million
customers were illegally charged for credit monitoring and reporting
services they were not receiving. The deceptive marketing misconduct
involved telemarketing scripts containing misstatements and off-script
sales pitches made by telemarketers that were misleading and omitted
pertinent information. The unfair billing practices involved billing
customers for privacy related products without having the
authorization necessary to perform the credit monitoring and credit
report retrieval services. As a result, the company billed customers
for services they did not receive, unfairly charged consumers for
interest and fees, illegally charged approximately 1.9 million
accounts, and failed to provide the product benefit.
A $7.5 million settlement was reached in April 2014 with former chief
financial officer for
Bank of America, Joe L. Price, over allegations
that the bank's management withheld material information related to
its 2008 merger with
Merrill Lynch . In August 2014, the United
States Department of Justice and the bank agreed to a $16.65 billion
agreement over the sale of risky, mortgage-backed securities before
Great Recession ; the loans behind the securities were transferred
to the company when it acquired banks such as
Merrill Lynch and
Countrywide in 2008. As a whole, the three firms provided $965
billion of mortgage-backed securities from 2004–2008. The
settlement was structured to give $7 billion in consumer relief and
$9.65 billion in penalty payments to the federal government and state
California , for instance, received $300 million to
recompense public pension funds. The settlement was the largest in
United States history between a single company and the federal
Parmalat SpA is a multinational Italian dairy and food corporation.
Following Parmalat\'s 2003 bankruptcy , the company sued
America for $10 billion, alleging the bank profited from its knowledge
of Parmalat's financial difficulties. The parties announced a
settlement in July 2009, resulting in
Bank of America paying Parmalat
$98.5 million in October 2009. In a related case, on April 18, 2011,
an Italian court acquitted
Bank of America and three other large
banks, along with their employees, of charges they assisted Parmalat
in concealing its fraud, and of lacking sufficient internal controls
to prevent such frauds. Prosecutors did not immediately say whether
they would appeal the rulings. In
Parma , the banks were still charged
with covering up the fraud.
CONSUMER CREDIT CONTROVERSIES
In January 2008,
Bank of America began notifying some customers
without payment problems that their interest rates were more than
doubled, up to 28%. The bank was criticized for raising rates on
customers in good standing, and for declining to explain why it had
done so. In September 2009, a
Bank of America credit card customer,
Ann Minch, posted a video on YouTube criticizing the bank for raising
her interest rate. After the video went viral , she was contacted by a
Bank of America representative who lowered her rate. The story
attracted national attention from television and internet
commentators. More recently, the bank has been criticized for
allegedly seizing three properties that were not under their
ownership, apparently due to incorrect addresses on their legal
In October 2009,
Julian Assange reported
that his organization possessed a 5 gigabyte hard drive formerly used
Bank of America executive and that Wikileaks intended to publish
In November 2010,
Forbes magazine published an interview with Assange
in which he stated his intent to publish information which would turn
a major U.S. bank "inside out". In response to this announcement,
Bank of America stock dropped 3.2%.
In December 2010,
Bank of America announced that it would no longer
service requests to transfer funds to WikiLeaks, stating that "Bank
of America joins in the actions previously announced by
PayPal , Visa
Europe and others and will not process transactions of
any type that we have reason to believe are intended for WikiLeaks...
This decision is based upon our reasonable belief that
be engaged in activities that are, among other things, inconsistent
with our internal policies for processing payments."
In late December it was announced that
Bank of America had bought up
more than 300 Internet domain names in an attempt to preempt bad
publicity that might be forthcoming in the anticipated WikiLeaks
release. The domain names included as BrianMoynihanBlows.com,
BrianMoynihanSucks.com and similar names for other top executives of
the bank. Nick Baumann of Mother Jones ridiculed this effort,
stating: "If I owned stock in
Bank of America, this would not give me
confidence that the bank is prepared for whatever
Julian Assange is
planning to throw at it."
Sometime before August 2011, it is claimed by
WikiLeaks that 5 GB of
Bank of America leaks was part of the deletion of over 3500
Daniel Domscheit-Berg , a now ex-WikiLeaks
On March 14, 2011, one or more members of the decentralized
collective Anonymous began releasing emails it said were obtained from
Bank of America. According to the group, the emails documented
"corruption and fraud", and relate to the issue of improper
foreclosures. The source, identified publicly as Brian Penny, was a
former LPI Specialist from Balboa Insurance, a firm which used to be
owned by the bank, but was sold to Australian Reinsurance Company QBE.
The state of
Arizona has investigated
Bank of America for misleading
homeowners who sought to modify their mortgage loans . According to
the attorney general of Arizona, the bank "repeatedly has deceived"
such mortgagors. In response to the investigation, the bank has given
some modifications on the condition that the homeowners refrain from
criticizing the bank.
ACCOUNTS OF IRANIANS FROZEN
In May 2014 many Iranian students in the U.S. and some
American-Iranian citizens realized their accounts have been frozen by
Bank of America. Although
Bank of America denied to reveal any
information or reason regarding this, some Iranians believe that it is
related to sanctions against Iran . Betty Riess, a spokeswoman for
Bank of America, told MintPress News via email, "We do not close
accounts on the basis of nationality, nor do we close accounts without
notice to customers." However, account holders believe there could be
a relationship between this action and their national origin.
Although most account holders say they did not receive any
notification prior their accounts being frozen,
Bank of America
insists that they do not freeze any account without prior
notification. When it was reported that
Bank of America was closing
the accounts of Iranians living in the U.S. and Iranian-Americans,
there was speculation that the bank did so on the basis of
discriminatory ideology, since
Bank of America did not give these
individuals any reason why their accounts were being closed. The bank
responded to these accusations, arguing that it was only following the
rules put forth by the U.S. federal government regarding economic
relations between the U.S. and Iran.
INVESTMENT IN MOUNTAINTOP REMOVAL
Bank of America has been criticized for its heavy investment in the
environmentally damaging processes of coal mining, especially through
mountaintop removal (MTR). On May 6, 2015, the company announced that
it would "reduce credit exposure ... to the coal mining industry,"
i.e. reduce its financing of companies engaging in MTR, coal mining,
and coal power production. The company stated that pressure to divest
from universities and environmental groups led to this policy change.
Bank of America Plaza , the tallest building in
Bank of America Stadium , home to the
Carolina Panthers of the
Notable buildings which
Bank of America currently occupies include:
Bank of America Tower in Phoenix,
Bank of America Center in Los Angeles
Transamerica Pyramid , in San Francisco
California Street , formerly the
Bank of America Center and
world headquarters, in San Francisco
Bank of America Plaza in Fort Lauderdale,
Bank of America Tower in
Bank of America Tower in Miami, Florida
Bank of America Center in Orlando,
Bank of America Tower in St. Petersburg,
Bank of America Plaza in Tampa,
Bank of America Plaza in
Atlanta , Georgia
Bank of America Building , formerly the LaSalle
Bank Building in
* One City Center , often called the
Bank of America building due to
signage rights, in
Bank of America Building in
Baltimore , Maryland
Bank of America Plaza in
St Louis, Missouri
Bank of America Tower in Albuquerque,
Bank of America Tower in New York City
Bank of America Corporate Center in
Charlotte, North Carolina
Charlotte, North Carolina (the
Bank of America Plaza in Charlotte, North Carolina
Bank of America Plaza in
Dallas , Texas
Bank of America Center in
Houston , Texas
Bank of America Tower in Midland,
Bank of America Plaza in
San Antonio , Texas
Bank of America Fifth Avenue Plaza in
Seattle , Washington
Columbia Center in Seattle, Washington
Bank of America Tower in Hong Kong
City Place I , also known as United Healthcare Center, in
Hartford, Connecticut (the tallest building in Connecticut)
9454 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills,
Robert B. Atwood Building in
Anchorage, Alaska was at one time
Bank of America Center, renamed in conjunction with the
bank's acquisition of building tenant Security Pacific Bank. This
particular branch was later acquired by Alaska-based Northrim
moved across the street to the
Linny Pacillo Parking Garage .
Bank of America Building (Providence) was opened in 1928 as the
Industrial Trust Building. It was, and is, the tallest building in
Rhode Island. Through a number of mergers it was later known as the
Bank building and the Fleet
Bank building. The
building was leased by
Bank of America from 2004 to 2012 and has been
vacant since March 2013. The building is commonly known as the
Superman Building based on a popular belief that it was the model for
Daily Planet building in the
Superman comic books.
* North Carolina portal
* San Francisco Bay Area portal
* Companies portal
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