BANKING: Transamerica v. Eccles

When California's mammoth Transamerica holding company sold the last of its interest in Bank of America in 1952, no one was more gratified than tart-tongued Marriner S. Eccles. As chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, Eccles had pushed divorce for nearly ten years. Eccles' family's First Security Corp. had long reigned as "the largest banking institution in the intermountain states" of Utah, Idaho and Wyoming. After the divorce of Transamerica and Bank of America, it looked as if neither would be able to invade that territory.

Last month, however, Transamerica nudged into Eccles' backyard; it bought three banks and four...

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