First Bank Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart Moves Into Banking And Financial Services:

"Wal-Mart Stores didn't get to be the world's biggest retailer by giving up easily. So despite being twice thwarted by lawmakers in its efforts to buy a bank, it has quietly but tenaciously expanded its foothold in financial services.

In its latest move, announced on Jan. 21, the retailing giant is introducing a no-fee Wal-Mart Discover credit card that offers 1% cash back, which it will launch with GE Consumer Finance in March.

This relentless push into financial services is starting to send shivers through the banking industry. Few believe Wal-Mart will stop with basic services as it applies its low-price, high-volume formula to yet another business category. And while other companies, from Nordstrom to General Motors, have bank and thrift charters or hybrid Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.-insured industrial loan companies (ILCs) in tow, no one trips alarms like Wal-Mart."

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