Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Illegal banking

Reading finacial and bank analysts talk about the "purchasing power" and "growth potential" of an untapped market may seem pretty boring in the same way that reading conveniance stores discuss an "untapped market" for cold pills sounds boring. That is, unless you realize that both of these examples involve illicit activity and illegal money.

The cold pills are just a comparison but several banks are gloating about there ability to "serve" the illegal alien market. Wells Fargo has this on their website:

Wells Fargo Matricula Account Openings Surpass Quarter Million Mark
“We’re proud to have been the first major financial services company in the United States to help Mexican nationals move from the risky cash economy into secure and reliable financial services – by promoting acceptance of the matricula card as a primary form of identification,” said Dick Kovacevich, Chairman and CEO of Wells Fargo. "By accepting the matricula card as a qualifying form of primary identification, Wells Fargo is providing a much-needed service to help Mexican nationals open a bank account and to succeed financially.”

Perhaps it escaped Dick's attention but Mexican nationals are not allowed to work in the United States. That means the money being desposited in his bank is illegaly earned. I would say that Wells Fargo is participating in money laundering and if I had any authority I would shut them down.

They also have a handy Money to Mexico (translated with google) page so that illegal aliens can take money out of the local economy to prop up their home country.

Bank of America has this in their FAQs section:
Can I get a loan if I'm not a U.S. citizen or if I live outside the country?
Yes. As long as the property you are buying or refinancing is in the United States.

Banking Strategies Magazine has this on their website:

Immigrant Outreach
One community bank in Vienna, Ga. has gone a step further. Flag Financial Corp., with assets of $540 million, operates two separate all-Spanish branches in the Atlanta suburbs under the name "El Banco de Nuestra Comunidad." The first branch in this group, which opened in June 2002, is already profitable, according to the bank.

Federal banking officials generally applaud these efforts, noting that alternatives to the banking system, such as check-cashing shops and informal remittance systems, can be more expensive for the immigrants. "It's good for the consumer, it's good for the economy, and it's good for banks to develop new customers," says Sandra Braunstein, senior associate director of the Division of Consumer and Community Affairs at the Federal Reserve Board.

The banks make money, the Feds like the idea, and the illegal aliens feel more comfortable breaking the law. Everyone's happy... except 75% of American citizens who have a serious problem with the current state of illegal immigration.

I would like to give kudos to two banks who failed to return any hits on the search term "matricula" either through their internal site search or a google search of their site: Washington Mutual and Key bank. Although Washington Mutual did return some hits on the term "immigrant" with regards to "outreach" but it didn't seem to go into all the "cultural" garbage and Spanish speaking nonsense found at other banks.

Definitely the worst of the worst is Wells Fargo. Contact them HERE
General Banking Questions: 1-800-869-3557
Report Fraud: 1-866-867-5568

The "report fraud" number is especially ironic. I intend to call them tommorow to report some fraud, namely that illegal aliens are banking with them. I will post a comment or update this post with the response I get.


Al said...

In Oregon we have New Credit Unions chasing after the Illegal Alien biz as well as the Banks.

shawn said...

Is this daniel from LO as a kid?

Daniel said...

Yes, is this my old neighbor?

Shawn said...

It is. You got an instant messenger contact?

Daniel said...

I don't. Post your email here. (I would but then the people who disagree with me will sign me up for all kinds of great spam, I'd be deleting gay porn until 2008)

shawn said...

sb_bode AT

They can send me anything they want. My filter should delete it. :-)

Send me an email though. It's been like 10 years.

Anonymous said...

under U.S. Criminal Code 274, 'It is a crime punishable by 10 years in jail for aiding and abetting someone in this country illegally for commercial gain.'

The Bank Secrecy Act of 1972 provides that 'Banks must know their customers and any illegal activity must be reported.'”

Daniel said...

Like I said, if I'm in charge of these Federally regulated institutions then I shut them down.