Bank of America, or Bank of America Corporation, is one of the country’s top banking and financial services companies. It was created in 1998 when NationsBank purchased BankAmerica. Charlotte, North Carolina is the headquarters of Bank of America.
The Bank of Italy first opened its doors in San Francisco in 1904, when Amadeo Peter Giannini founded it. It was later acquired by Giannini’s holding firm, Transamerica Corporation, and became Bank of America. In 1958, it launched BankAmeriCard, the first bank credit card. (In 1950, the Diners’ Club, Inc., introduced the first universal credit card, which could be used at a number of locations.)
BankAmerica Corporation, as it was then known, was founded in Delaware in 1968 as a holding company for Bank of America NT & SA and other banking subsidiaries. The 1983 purchase of Washington state bank Seafirst Corporation, which was the largest U.S. interstate bank merger to that point, was one of BankAmerica’s most significant purchases. Bank of America became the first bank in the United States to offer coast-to-coast operations after purchasing its largest competitor in California, Security Pacific Corporation, in 1991. With the acquisition of FleetBoston Financial Corporation in 2004, it expanded into New England, and by the early twenty-first century, it had more than 5,500 bank branches in more than 20 states. states, as well as doing business and investment banking in a variety of countries across the world. By acquiring National Processing, a transaction-processing firm, in 2004, the company expanded its credit-card business, and by merging with MBNA Corporation in 2006, it became a significant credit-card issuer. Bank of America bought U.S. Trust Corporation, an investment firm that manages investments for high-net-worth clients, in 2007 to strengthen its position in the wealth-management market.
As the global financial crisis unfolded in 2008, many firms, including Countrywide Financial, the largest American mortgage lender, and Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., began to struggle. Both enterprises were purchased by Bank of America that year, and the deals were pricey. Bank of America said in January 2009 that it will receive $20 billion in government assistance and an extra $118 billion in guarantees against bad assets accrued as a result of the Merrill Lynch purchase. Following that, Bank of America was hit with a slew of state and federal lawsuits alleging that it had deceived investors. In 2012, it agreed to pay $2.43 billion to settle a class-action lawsuit alleging that it failed to disclose Merrill Lynch’s true financial health to investors. The mortgage operations of both Bank of America and Countrywide were also scrutinized. They were accused, in particular, of making hazardous mortgage loans and then lying to investors about the quality of those loans. The US government sued Bank of America for financial fraud in 2013, and the business agreed to pay $16.65 billion the following year.