We’ve done this twice before when Merrill Lynch was bought by BofA and when AIG sold itself to Uncle Sam, but I have to say, doing this WaMu list was by far the most fun. Their advertising was all over the place! Between those ridiculous ‘whoo hoo!’ spots, the ones with the ‘Bankers’ Pen’, and even the ones where they showed how ‘easy’ it was to get a home loan, they’re all epic losers in my eyes.
1.) Many of WaMu’s ads featured a group of guys called ‘The Banker’s Pen’. Apparently, they’re supposed to symbolize the outdated and out-of-touch ideas that other banks have about their customers. After WaMu’s colossal fail, we can look back and suggest that maybe that smartass WaMu guy should have listened to one of the bankers. Maybe the dude reading the Wall Street Journal? He probably had some idea of how screwed they were.
2.) This is probably the best one that is also the most representative of their whole problem. Dating back to 2006, WaMu was lauding their ‘flexible home loan’ policy that virtually guaranteed everyone a home loan. Anyone else see how giving loans to people who couldn’t afford them was probably a bad idea? And isn’t that guy on 30 Rock now? Good for him!
3.) Yeah, so that WaMu debt consolidation? That turned out to be some pretty risky business. And not the Tom Cruise ‘getting-laid-on-the-subway‘ kind. We’re talking about serious major banking corporations reduced to dust by poor oversight ‘risky business’. Not as cool.
4.) WaMu doesn’t nickel and dime you. They offer free checks for life and free cash withdrawals. They also offer extensive risk exposure to the failing mortgage market! It’s kind of a ‘bad outweighs the good’ type of thing. Here’s the real question – do you still get all those free WaMu checks after JP Morgan takes over?
5.) The first one is in Chinese (Yikes! Deepest apologies to all you non-Mandarin speakers, but seriously get with the times), but the rest are dubbed over in English. Tagline – ‘There’s a smarter way to save money.’ Nowadays the smartest way to save money is probably to avoid investing in bad debt.
6.) Jeez, I’m not sure I can even explain this one. That is, if it’s a real WaMu commercial? I’m skeptical, but OK, yes maybe you SHOULD be afraid of banking. Investment banking in particular. And securitization. That’s a killer.
7.) WaMu – We no longer ‘got your back’.
8.) Whoa, wait. Bankers on the verge of jumping off buildings? Maybe this one isn’t funny now.
P.S.- here’s the proper technique to start a WaMu bank run.