Friday, October 3, 2008

Change In Suitor For Wachovia Could Benefit City

Perhaps, just perhaps, the BBB (Bank Branch Blight) won't be quite as bad as expected. Everyone knows that banks have expanded their retail presences in a big way over the past several years (by more than 40% in the past decade), and everyone probably assumed that it wouldn't last.
This may be true. However, if Wachovia is taken over by Wells Fargo rather than Citigroup, it may not be as bad as expected. With a Citigroup takeover, there is little doubt that Wachovia's 22 branches south of 125th Street in Manhattan would be mostly if not all goners. On the other hand, Wells Fargo needs a retail presence, and Wachovia's branches would be far more likely to stay.
All is not peaches and cream here. With Chase taking over Wamu (Wamu has 46 branches in Manhattan), 40 bank branches are expected to close.
The wild card, of course, is the conversion of Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley from investment banks to commercial banks. So, if you are suddenly a commercial bank taking regular deposits, you'd figure you would needs branches. The question is how many? Chances are, there should be plenty of locations to chose from.

1 comment:

  1. I'm wondering whether now is a good time to buy an apartment in Manhattan. Do you think so? Do you think prices will keep going up, or should I wait? I don't absolutely have to buy an apartment, so my only real concern is what will happen with apartment prices. Give me your opinion please, and I'd be curious to know your reasoning.