One day, it’ll happen — and pay off

Article Excerpt

Wal-Mart tried but failed to complete a couple of banking acquisitions, one in 1999 and the other in 2002. Now it wants to form its own bank subsidiary, and has applied for an industrial banking license. Predictably, the proposal is drawing stiff opposition from banks and consumer advocates. They claim Wal-Mart’s clout would let it run small banks out of business. Wal-Mart says it has no plans to open retail branches in its stores, but it could one day reverse that decision. Sooner or later, Wal-Mart is likely to launch its own bank. Though it may start out with heavy restrictions on its activities, its strength in information technology would help it keep its costs low. It could make substantial savings just by processing its own credit card and other electronic transactions, instead of paying fees to other banks. banks…

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