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FYI Guy

Seattle Times news librarian Gene Balk crunches the numbers

Topic: Banks

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July 19, 2013 at 10:06 AM

BECU has surpassed Chase Bank in Seattle

There goes the neighborhood: New Chase Bank in Lower Queen Anne (Photo: Gene Balk/The Seattle Times)

Here lies Easy Street Records: The new Chase Bank in Lower Queen Anne (Photo: Gene Balk/The Seattle Times)

Remember when anarchists vandalized a Chase Bank on Capitol Hill a couple years ago?

When the story ran on The Seattle Times website, most online commenters actually seemed to side with the anarchists.  “I don’t break windows” one top-rated comment reads, “I moved to a credit union.”

Does Chase have an image problem in Seattle — even more so than the other big banks?  Jon Talton a year ago blamed it on lingering anger over the circumstances surrounding Chase’s takeover of Seattle-based WaMu in 2008.

To make matters worse, cherished neighborhood businesses seem to be turning into Chase Banks at an alarming rate: Easy Street Records in Lower Queen Anne, Costas Opa restaurant in Fremont, and Twice Sold Tales bookstore in the University District have all been replaced by Chase branches in the last two years.

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December 11, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Credit unions have surpassed BofA in Seattle

If you haven’t switched away from one of the big banks, chances are you’ve at least considered it.  Many Americans, fed up with hidden fees and excessive charges, have said goodbye to the big banks in favor of credit unions in recent years.  Here in Seattle, that shift has been dramatic.

28 percent of Seattle-area households bank primarily with a credit union now, up from 21.9 percent in 2008, according to market data firm Scarborough Research.  And, as the bar chart below illustrates, credit unions have surpassed Bank of America to become the No. 1 banking choice in the Seattle area:

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