Wachovia Chokes on Oakland Bank

After the North Carolina finance giant Wachovia spent $24 billion to acquire Oakland’s Golden West Financial Corporation, the bills have come due, and the shareholders are dusting off the torches and pitchforks. According to the East Bay Business Times, Wachovia’s first quarter losses were a big, fat $393 million, mostly due to the defaults on mortgages picked up from Golden West. When angry shareholders learned that Wachovia planned to cut its dividend in half, a mob of them packed the annual shareholders meeting and called for the resignation of CEO Ken Thompson. Thompson, in term, apologized for buying Golden West in the first place, calling it a “bad acquisition” that has “hurt us.”

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