Community Bankers Association of Illinois

WAL-MART TO EXPAND MONEY CENTERS
08/24/07

Wal-Mart currently conducts more than two million money services transactions each week. A recent announcement by Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. states that the 225 Wal-Mart Money Centers will double to 450 by the end of this year and then more then double again to 1,000 by the end of 2008. In addition, The Wal-Mart MoneyCard was made available to nearly 1,300 Wal-Mart stores by the end of June and to another 1,300 stores by the end of July. The card will be available at most stores by the end of this year. Please take a look at the complete Wal-Mart announced. Immediately, ICBA President and CEO Cam Fine took to the broadcast airwaves to warn resolutely that ICBA and community bankers would "vigorously" and "continuously" oppose any attempt by the mega-retailer to re-file its FDIC application to acquire an industrial loan company. Appearing live on Bloomberg TV, Fine predicted Wal-Mart would re-file its application to charter an industrial loan company (ILC) in Utah. He also trumpeted our industry's urgent call for Congress to close the ILC loophole this year-and reaffirm once and for all the policy of separating banking and commerce-by passing the ICBA-priority legislation, the Industrial Bank Holding Company Act (H.R. 698 and S. 1356).

"Wal-Mart wants into the financial services business, and they will do everything conceivable to do that," said Fine, who also appeared on the PBS program Nightly Business Report. "It shows Wal-Mart's true colors in this case." Wal-Mart officials said they were planning to roll out additional financial services in the future through third parties but declined to give specifics.

Community bankers should contact Senator Durbin and Senator Obama IMMEDIATELY to urge them to co-sponsor S. 1356 to uphold the separation of banking and commerce. Please remind them that the House passed the same legislation last month by a 371-16 vote (H.R. 698). Please contact Senator Durbin by calling (202) 224-2152 and contact Senator Obama by calling (202) 224-2854. Please also follow-up with a sample e-mail message that you can edit and send to Senator Durbin and Senator Obama. Please contact CBAI's Department of Governmental Relations by calling 217/529-2265 with any questions or concerns.

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