Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A New Occupy Wall Street Tactic

It was only a matter of time.  Yours Truly has been quietly wondering for months whether the high rate of unemployment and economic malaise in the U.S. could eventually affect the banking system in a very fundamental way - less money on deposit in individual and small business accounts.  It was a simple assumption.  But now Occupy Wall Streeters are actually targeting CitiBank and Bank of America in a campaign to get people who sympathize with The Movement to withdraw their funds, close their accounts and bank elsewhere - even at other Too Big Too Fail (TBTF) banks.  That's right, an old fashioned "run on the bank" to get the C-suite's attention.  ("Bank Transfer Day", November 5th, according to their Facebook page.)  A bank run is perennially one of the biggest worries of governments and financial authorities everywhere, but most such "runs" are the result of rumours of an impending individual bank failure, and are virtually unknown these days due to government deposit insurance programs.  This is different, a politically-motivated bank run.  Consumers letting their wallets do the talking (and walking) has always been a powerful message to business.  That said, it would take something like a hundred thousand people moving a hundred thousand dollars each to make a dent in B of A's affairs, so don't hold your breath.

The Good News:  Looking forward to Calgary this weekend!