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Bank of America becomes top credit card issuer

Summary

Bank of America becomes the nation’s largest issuer of credit cards following the merger with MBNA.

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With the recent stockholder and regulator approval of the merger between Bank of America and MBNA, BofA has become the largest credit card issuer in the United States. Bank of America now has outstanding credit card assets totaling approximately $61.5 billion.

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The merger in 2004 between JP Morgan Chase and Bank One created what was then the largest issuer, surpassing Citibank for the first time ever in terms of credit cards issued and total assets. However, Chase has fallen to second place and Citibank third as a result of the BofA/MBNA gargantuan merger.

Bank of America began operations in 1904 in San Francisco and was originally called the Bank of Italy, as its founder was an Italian

immigrant. Several years ago, Bank of America merged with Nation’s Bank, creating the first coast to coast banking operation. Prior to the MBNA merger, Bank of America also acquired Fleet Bank of Boston in 2003, which secured its spot as a top three banking powerhouse.

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Published: January 20, 2006

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