America's Top 20 Bank Holding Companies

Ally Financial Inc.

Ally Financial Inc. ranks fifteenth among banks in the United States, according to the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council's (FEIEC) listing of fifty banks with the highest value of assets. As of March 2012, Ally Financial had assets worth $18,350,000

Ally Financial's history begins almost a century ago, in 1919, when it started as General Motors Acceptance Corporation (GMAC) as a way to help more people buy automobiles sold by the General Motors automobile corporation. They opened branches around the United States and Canada with locations including Detroit, Chicago, New York, San Francisco and Toronto. During their second year of business, GMAC started financing automobiles in Great Britain. In 1939 they formed Motors Insurance Corporation to offer automobile insurance to the cars which they financed.

Back in 1985 GMAC Mortgage division was formed after the bank took over loans from Norwest Mortgage, Inc. and Colonial Mortgage Service. Over the years, they took on additional loans from other lenders including and became a top lender of sub-prime mortgage lending. The year 1985 saw GMAC finance their 100 millionth car.

In 2005 the mortgage division underwent reorganization and became Residential Capital (ResCap) to offer mortgage services on residential property across the globe. In 2006, Cerberus Capital Management bought 51% of interest in GMAC. That same year, GMAC started to divest its real estate by selling to KKR, Five Mile Capital Partners and Goldman Sachs. These three investors formed Capmark Financial Group but later filed bankruptcy while the mortgages went to Berkshire Hathaway and Leucadia.

At the end of 2008, GMAC received $5 billion from the United States Department of the Treasury as part of the Troubled Asset Relief Program. On May 15, 2009, the banking division of GMAC became Ally Bank and just six days later, May 21, 2009, the Treasury gave GMAC LLC an additional $7.5 billion, thus making the United States Government a primary shareholder in the bank. At the end of the year, December 30, due to being unable to secure additional funding from private sources, the Treasury announced that they'd give the struggling bank another $3.8 billion.

GMAC Inc. re-branded the bank as Ally Financial Inc. on May 10, 2010 and had a profitable year after agreeing, in 2009, to provide financing for Chrysler dealers and their customers.

By December 2010 nearly three-quarters of Ally Financial, 73.8%, was owned by the United States government while the rest was owned by private investors, Cerberus Capital Management and General Motors.

Ally had another good year in 2011 after Maserati North American chose Ally to be the bank of choice for Maserati vehicles which are sold in the United States and Canada.

By January 2012 the United States government, through the TARP program, had invested $12 billion in Ally Financial.

The headquarters of Ally Financial are in Detroit, Michigan as they have been since GMAC was founded. The bank operates in 21 countries with over 15 million customers. In North America their major offices are in New York City; Salt Lake City; Charlotte, North Carolina, Fort Washington, Pennsylvania; Toronto, Canada; and Monterrey, Mexico. Their corporate centers around the world include Shanghai, China; Sao Paulo, Brazil; Cardiff and High Wycombe in the United Kingdom; and Ruesselsheim, Germany.

Since the bank originally began as a way for customers of General Motors to finance their new cars, Today Ally Financial is the main financing bank for General Motors, Saab, Chrysler and Thor Industries. Being in a location where car manufacturing is a major industry helps the bank to maintain its huge presence in the auto loan industry.