Six months after buying Wachovia, Wells Fargo tunes up investment banking


When Wells Fargo (WFC) dived in and broke up a government-backed bid by Citigroup (C) for teetering Wachovia last fall, it seemed like a logical move. Buying Wachovia would give Wells a coast-to-coast branch network and make it one of the biggest banks in the country.

But what would happen to Wachovia's investment bank? Though it was far from a major player on Wall Street, Wachovia's debt and equity underwriting and merger advisory businesses were all among the top 20 in the country by deal value when it was acquired. But Wells Fargo wasn't interested in competing in those areas then. Now, it seems to have changed its mind.