Man Pulls $1 Million from Bank of America But Completely Misses The Point

What do checking accounts at Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo have in common? They're all backed by FDIC insurance and are completely safe.

Feb 16, 2014 at 12:30PM

A former Harvard professor has been making headlines after announcing he was pulling over $1 million from his accounts at Bank of America (NYSE:BAC)

The professor cited the Federal Reserve's zero interest rate policy as the primary reason why. He blames the policy for the economic problems in the emerging markets and sees a major pull back for U.S. equities. 

And then the professor stops making sense. He then jumps, preposterously in my view, from emerging market volatility to a full scale run on the major global banks. He's putting his money where his mouth is at least.

Breaking down his logic goes something like this:

  1. Emerging markets are having a hard time because of the Fed's policies
  2. Global banks have exposure to emerging markets
  3. Global  banks are heavily affected by monetary policy, more so than other industries
  4. We should reduce our exposure to emerging markets and global banks

But Bank of America, and certainly Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC), have little to no exposure to the emerging markets -- so why pull money from there? Citigroup (NYSE:C) perhaps, as international markets are a cornerstone of the bank's long term strategy. JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) is also fairly committed to doing business globally.

But how would weakness overseas or even a bear market at home put a checking account at risk? There is the whole "too big to fail" thing, and lest we we forget, the FDIC exists to backstop exactly the run on deposits he predicts. Even though the FDIC backstops only $250,000, the professor could simply divide this money among 4 institutions and be completely secure. 

Watch the video below to find out the full story-exactly what the professor said and exactly why it doesn't make sense. Investors, perhaps, should take note -- but depositors have nothing to fear.

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Jay Jenkins has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Bank of America and Wells Fargo. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, and Wells Fargo. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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