Wells Fargo joins rush to leave TARP

15 December 2009

Wells Fargo has joined Bank of America and Citigroup to become the latest financial institution to announce its plans to leave the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP).

It is launching a $10.4 billion common stock offering to help fund its total withdrawal from the TARP scheme, paying back $25 billion to the US government.

John Stumpf, president and chief executive officer of Wells Fargo, said: "We're ready to fully repay TARP in a way that serves the interests of the US taxpayer, as well as our customers, team members and investors."

Mr Stumpf added that the financial services company was committed to continuing lending to homeowners and had supplied more than $640 billion in credit to consumers and businesses in the US since entering the TARP scheme last year.

Last month, government statistics revealed that Wells Fargo was the top US lender to small businesses operating in the country, after approving $827 million in financing to such companies during the last fiscal year.

By Asim Shah

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