Banking News Updates: Bank of America Corp (BAC) Closes Branch, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) Case, Wells Fargo & Co (WFC) Includes Robert Smyth

Editor’s Note: Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC)

Bank of America closing Pendleton Street branch (Greenville News)
Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) said it is closing its Pendleton Street branch near downtown Greenville, citing a decline in transactions. A bank spokeswoman confirmed to GreenvilleOnline.com the branch will close Nov. 22. The spokeswoman said customer letters were mailed last week “to give them ample time to become familiar with other locations,” including Augusta Road and Greenville Plaza locations that are less than 2 miles away.

Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC)London Whale Resurfaces in Potential U.S. JPMorgan Case (Bloomberg)
Bruno Iksil, the former JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) trader whose bets caused more than $6.2 billion in losses last year, is now central to any U.S. charges against his former colleagues. Iksil, the Frenchman who became known as the London Whale because of his trading book’s size, has been cooperating with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s Office for months in their probe of the New York-based bank’s biggest trading debacle ever, said three people with direct knowledge with the matter. Iksil won’t face charges as long as he cooperates and testifies, the people said.

Wells Fargo brings former Citizens CEO Smyth, other Boston banking vets onto new advisory board (Boston Business Journal)
Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) says it will grow its commercial banking presence in New England with the help of a new advisory board made up of Boston banking veterans including former Citizens president Robert E. Smyth. Smyth retired from Citizens in 2009 after seven years in the bank’s top spot. Frederick “Fritz” Ferbert and David Splaine will join Smyth on the new Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) advisory board, the company said.

Bank of America exec accused of plotting contract killing of his wife: federal judge denies bail (New York Daily News)
Former Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) executive Chris Latham has been denied bond and must remain in jail on charges he conspired to put out a contract killing on his estranged wife. U.S. District Judge Bristow Marchant ruled late Monday afternoon that Latham, 50, must remain behind bars in South Carolina’s Charleston County Detention Center. During a hearing lasting more than two hours, the federal judge said the severity of the charges prompted him to deny bond for Latham.

JPMorgan Trading Charges Said to Be Announced Today (Bloomberg)
The U.S. may announce charges as early as today related to JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM)’s trading losses last year, a person familiar with the matter said. Former bank employees in London have been investigated by the U.S. Justice Department for more than a year over whether they tried to conceal the losses at the largest U.S. bank, a person familiar with the matter previously said. JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM) lost more than $6.2 billion last year on derivatives bets. The loss, first disclosed in May 2012, led to an earnings restatement, a Senate subcommittee hearing and probes by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and U.K. Financial Conduct Authority.

Wells Fargo cuts West Chester jobs (Cincinnati Business Courier)
Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) is eliminating 63 employees at its Home Mortgage Northeast Retail Fulfillment Group in West Chester. The San Francisco-based financial services company announced the cuts in a filing with the Ohio Office of Workforce Development last week. Employees who will be losing their jobs were notified Aug. 7. They include an administrative assistant, underwriters, loan administrators, loan document specialists and a lending officer.

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