MUFG Union Bank

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(Redirected from Union Bank of California)
Founded1864; 159 years ago (1864) (as The Bank of California)
1996 (as Union Bank of California)
2008; 15 years ago (2008) (as UnionBank)
FounderKaspare Cohn Edit this on Wikidata
DefunctDecember 1, 2022; 12 months ago (2022-12-01)
FateAcquired by U.S. Bancorp
Headquarters1251 Avenue of the Americas
New York City
United States
Key people
  • Kevin Cronin (CEO)
  • Masatoshi Komoriya (Executive Chairman)
  • Greg Seibly (President and Head of Regional Banking)
The former Union Bank logo used from 1996 prior to the 2008 rebranding.
Former Union Bank logo from December 2008 to November 2017.
A branch in Los Angeles, California

Union Bank was an American national bank with 398 branches in California, Washington and Oregon. It was owned by MUFG Americas Holdings Corporation and was acquired by U.S. Bancorp in December 2022. It was headquartered in New York City and had commercial branches in Dallas, Houston, New York and Chicago, in addition to two international offices.


Union Bank[edit]

In 1914, Kaspare Cohn founded Kaspare Cohn Commercial & Savings Bank in Los Angeles. It was renamed Union Bank & Trust Company of Los Angeles in 1918. Harry Volk was recruited from Prudential Insurance Company as the bank's new CEO in 1957 and pioneered the use of the one-bank holding company,[1] among other banking innovations. [2] Volk retired in 1980 after the purchase of the bank by London-based Standard Chartered Bank in 1979.

MUFG Bank, Ltd.[edit]

The Bank of Tokyo established the Bank of Tokyo California in 1953 in San Francisco. In 1975, Bank of Tokyo California purchased San Diego's Southern California First National Bank, shortening its name to California First. Four years later Bank of Tokyo California, via California First, took over Union Bank and adopted its name.

In May 1996, Mitsubishi Bank and the Bank of Tokyo merged.[3] In San Francisco, the Bank of California merged into Union Bank, N.A., and the merged entity, Union Bank of California, N.A. became a direct subsidiary of the bank holding company, UnionBanCal Corporation.

In 1999, UnionBanCal Corporation became a public company listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

In August 2008, Mitsubishi UFJ offered to buy the 35% of Union Bank it did not already own, which Union Bank accepted.[4][5]

On November 4, 2008, the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU), a wholly owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG), announced that BTMU had successfully acquired all of the outstanding shares of UnionBanCal Corporation.[6]

In 2014, MUFG integrated the U.S. operations of its subsidiary The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd. (BTMU) with those of San Francisco–based Union Bank, N.A.[7]

In April 2018, the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd. (BTMU) was renamed to MUFG Bank, Ltd.[8]

When it was called MUFG UnionBank, it was a subsidiary of intermediate holding company, MUFG Americas Holdings Corporation, and a member of the Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group.[9]

In December 2022, the bank was acquired by U.S. Bancorp for $8 billion.[10][11][12][13][14][15]


Date Acquired Source
1864 Bank of California
1883 First National Bank
1905 The London and San Francisco Bank
1918 The Bank of Personal Service
1952 The Bank of Tokyo of California
1957 Occidental Savings & Commercial Bank (North Hollywood) [16]
1958 Union Bank
1967 Southern California First National Bank
1972 Mitsubishi Bank of California
1975 California First Bank
1972 Mitsubishi Bank of California
1984 Bancal Tri-State Corporation – bank holding company for The Bank of California
2002 First Western Bank [17]
2004 Business Bank of California [18]
2010 Frontier Bank [19]
2010 Tamalpais Bank [20]
2012 Pacific Capital Bancorpbank holding company for Santa Barbara Bank & Trust [21]
2013 First Bank Association Bank Services [22]


On October 19, 2004, the Federal Reserve Board announced that Union Bank had entered into a written agreement to avoid criminal prosecution for money laundering.[23] Three years later, Union Bank was again accused of money-laundering and in September 2007, the bank agreed to pay $31.6 million in penalties and forfeitures to settle government claims that it had been implicated in an elaborate drug money laundering scheme involving Mexican exchange houses known as casas de cambio.[24]


  1. ^ "Harry J. Volk, Business Executive".
  2. ^ Deutsch, Claudia (18 May 2000). "Harry J. Volk, 94, a Bank Executive Known for Innovations". New York Times.
  3. ^ "Banking merger to cost 850 jobs". SFGATE. September 28, 1995.
  4. ^ Nakamoto, Michiyo (August 12, 2008). "MUFG to buy out UnionBanCal for $3bn". Financial Times.
  5. ^ Dolan, David; Nishitani, Yumiko (August 17, 2008). "MUFG sweetens UnionBanCal bid to $3.5 billion". Reuters.
  6. ^ Sorkin, Andrew Ross; de la Merced, Michael J. (August 19, 2008). "Japanese Bank Buys Rest of UnionBanCal". The New York Times.
  7. ^ "Notice regarding the Americas business integration of The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd.and change of the legal names of consolidated subsidiaries" (PDF). February 28, 2014.
  8. ^ "Our History". MUFG Americas Holdings Corporation. 2 December 2020.
  10. ^ "MUFG completes sale of MUFG Union Bank, N.A. to U.S. Bancorp" (Press release). PR Newswire. December 1, 2022.
  11. ^ Ramstad, Evan (September 22, 2021). "As U.S. Bank joins merger wave, it vows to keep front-line employees in $8B purchase of MUFG Union". Star Tribune.
  12. ^ "U.S. Bancorp Receives U.S. Regulatory Approval for Acquisition of MUFG Union Bank". Business Wire. October 16, 2022.
  13. ^ Ennis, Dan (14 October 2022). "Regulators approve U.S. Bank-MUFG Union merger". Banking Dive. Retrieved 22 October 2022.
  14. ^ "Regulators Approve U.S. Bank's $8B Purchase of Union Bank". US News. Associated Press. October 14, 2022.
  15. ^ Kumar, Kavita (December 1, 2022). "U.S. Bancorp completes $8 billion acquisition of West Coast's MUFG Union Bank". Star Tribune.
  16. ^ "Discuss Merger". Valley Times. October 3, 1957.
  17. ^ "Union Bank of California to acquire First Western Bank". American City Business Journals. December 19, 2001.
  18. ^ "UnionBanCal to Buy Business Bank". Los Angeles Times. September 27, 2003.
  19. ^ "Former Mastro property in Redmond sells for $3.5 million". American City Business Journals. May 3, 2013.
  20. ^ Halstead, Richard (April 16, 2010). "Regulators take over Tamalpais Bank, sell assets to Union Bank". Marin Independent Journal.
  22. ^ "Union Bank Completes Acquisition of First Bank Association Bank Services" (Press release). PR Newswire. November 25, 2013.
  23. ^ "FRB: Press Release—Written agreement with Union Bank of California International—October 19, 2004" (Press release).
  24. ^ Vardi, Nathan (17 September 2007). "UnionBanCal's Drug Money Problem". Forbes.