A lawyer, according to Black's Law Dictionary, is "a person learned in the law; as a attorney, counsel or solicitor; a person who is practicing law." Law is the system of rules of conduct established by the sovereign government of a society to correct wrongs, maintain the stability of political and social authority, and deliver justice. Working as a lawyer involves the practical application of abstract legal theories and knowledge to solve specific individualized problems, or to advance the interests of those who retain (i.e., hire) lawyers to perform legal services.
Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 57 million consumer and small business relationships with approximately 5,900 retail banking offices and approximately 18,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with 29 million active users. Bank of America is among the world's leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations in more than 40 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
The Banks History
Bank of America's history dates to 1904, when Amadeo Giannini founded the Bank of Italy in San Francisco to cater to immigrants who were denied service from other banks. In 1928, Giannini merged with the Bank of America Los Angeles and consolidated his former bank with various other bank holdings to establish what would become the biggest banking institution in the United States. Later he renamed Bank of Italy on November 3, 1930 and Bank of America came into existence. The then combined company was headed by Giannini with Monnette working as co-Chair. Giannini sought to build a national bank which he can expand into most of the western states and to the insurance industry. New technologies also allowed credit cards to be linked directly to individual bank accounts. In 1958, the bank introduced the BankAmericard, which changed its name to Visa in 1975.
The purchase of BankAmerica Corp by the NationsBank Corporation 1997 was the biggest bank acquisition at that time. With the US$64.8 billion acquisition of BankAmerica by NationsBank, the bank has combined assets of US$570 billion with 4,800 branches in about 22 states.
In 2001, Hugh McColl, Bank of America CEO and Chairman stepped down and Ken Lewis became his successor. Bank of America announced that it will purchase Boston-based FleetBoston Financial bank for $47 billion in stock and cash. At the time of merger, FleetBoston was the seventh largest bank in United States with $197 billion in assets, over 20 million customers and revenue of $12 billion. Hundreds of FleetBoston workers lost their jobs or were demoted, according to the Boston Globe.
The bank also went into a number of acquisitions that include the purchase of US Trust, Acquisition of LaSalle Bank and Acquisition of Countrywide Financial.
On September 15, 2008, Bank of America announced that they would purchase Merrill Lynch & Co, Inc. Merrill Lynch was in the days of collapse at that time and their acquisition by Bank of America has saved them from bankruptcy. During this period, Bank of America was also in talks to buy Lehman Brothers but lack of government guarantees caused them to abandon their talks with the Lehman Brothers. Today, Bank of America is the largest bank holding company by assets with over 59 million customers and more than 6,100 banking offices throughout the United States and various other countries. The bank provides a wide range of unparalleled banking services and products that allow the customers to make a better management of their finance.
Bank of America received US $20 billion in the federal bailout from the U.S. government through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) on 16 January 2009 and also got a guarantee of US $118 billion in potential losses at the company. This was in addition to the $25 billion given to them in the Fall of 2008 through TARP. The additional payment was part of a deal with the US government to preserve Bank of America's merger with the troubled investment firm Merrill Lynch.