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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Spanish banking giant BBVA has decided to exit the U.S. market. It remains the owner of BBVA Bancomer, the largest bank in Mexico.

Why it matters: In the 2000s, BBVA went on something of a spending spree in Texas and other border states, buying up a series of banks culminating in the $9.6 billion acquisition of Compass Bancshares in 2007.

  • It was the high point of North American globalization, and it was reasonable to envisage the continent's economies converging, much like Europe's, especially near the border.
  • BBVA is no longer as optimistic, has now agreed to sell all of its U.S. holdings to PNC for $11.6 billion.

Among the casualties of BBVA's strategic retreat from the U.S.: Tuyyo, an innovative mobile app that allowed Mexicans in the U.S. to send money back to their families for free.

  • The funds could be withdrawn any time at any Bancomer ATM, just with a code — no ATM card needed.
  • Tuyyo was quietly shuttered last year.

The bottom line: The net flow of migrants from Mexico to the U.S. — part of the reason for BBVA to expand from Mexico to Texas — turned negative about 15 years ago, and has remained that way ever since.

  • Strong supply chains still bind the two countries. But if you want to find a part of the world where regional integration is getting visibly stronger, then you would not look first to North America or Europe. Asia and Africa are much better bets on that front.

Go deeper

20 mins ago - World

Putin to demand legal guarantee against NATO expansion in call with Biden

Biden and Putin meeting in Geneva in June. Photo: Mikhail Metzel\TASS via Getty Images

Russian President Vladimir Putin is demanding a legally binding guarantee that NATO will not expand east — including to Ukraine — and plans to raise the issue in an upcoming phone call with President Biden, according to the Kremlin.

Why it matters: Russia has massed more than 94,000 troops on the border with Ukraine and could be preparing for a large-scale invasion at the end of January, Ukraine's defense minister said Friday.

A tale of two jobs reports

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

Whatever you think about the economy, you’ll find something in this morning’s conflicting jobs report to reinforce your views: America's job market is white-hot and the labor market is anemic.

Between the lines: The conflict comes from the two separate surveys the government uses to compile the report.

Elon Musk's mega-billion bounty

Photo: Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images

Here's how insanely rich Elon Musk is: He has unloaded $10 billion of his stock in the past month — and could do that 15+ more times given his silos of shares.