National City Bank

National City Bank was established in 1845 by a group of entrepreneurs from Cleveland. The body was then named City Bank of Cleveland. It was the first public financial institution in the small town with no railroad or electricity. The body ranked among the top ten largest banks, in view of deposits and mortgages. The National City Mortgage realized the first mortgage ever in the US. The banking services offered include asset management, commercial and retail banking, mortgage financing, etc. The online banking option is also available. More recently (2004-2008), the bank purchased a number of other establishments, such as Provident Financial Group (for $2.1 billion), Allegiant Bancorp and Fidelity Bancshares Inc. ($1 billion). The Harbor Florida Bancshares Inc. was bought out for $1.1 billion in stocks. After the expansion, National City Bank’s assets were worth estimated $7.4 billion. Most significantly in 2007, the Bank acquired the holding company for MidAmerica Bank, ranked ninth in terms of market share (2.18%) in the Chicago area. After purchasing the company, MAF Bancorp Inc., National City was to reach 4th in the same ranking (with 3.96%). Alongside these acquisitions, the bank had to surrender over 80% of its share in National Processing Company, a servicer executing merchant credit card operations, to Bank of America. Also, National City sold the First Franklin origination franchise to Merryll Lynch&Co in 2006.

In October 2008, rumors for a possible sell-out of National City were developed in an article, published in the Wall Street Journal. Two weeks after, PNC Financial Services finalized the buy-out, to be realized with a stock transaction. National City was notoriously “taken under,” because PNC paid less than the former’s market value. National City was to be merged into PBS with its identity - gradually downsized. The arrangement expanded PNC network, adding Florida as a presence area, and strengthened its position in Ohio, Indiana, Maryland, and Kentucky. At the same time, since both banks had major market shares in Pennsylvania, antitrust issues arose. To deal with them, the Department of Justice ordered PNC to surrender 50 National City offices in proximity to Pittsburg and 11 other to Erie, in favor of its competitors. A series of sell-offs followed. Recently, more branches in Pittsburgh were closed, because the problem still persists.

The initial intent to have the identity of National City downsized was not thoroughly managed by the PNC. The body failed to completely integrate the two banks, with National City still well-recognized throughout the US. However, all of its remaining branches were changed to PNC offices in November, 2009.

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