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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  • The funds could be withdrawn any time at any Bancomer ATM, just with a code — no ATM card needed.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

Tony Hsieh, longtime Zappos CEO, dies at 46

Tony Hsieh. Photo: FilmMagic/FilmMagic

Tony Hsieh, the longtime ex-chief executive of Zappos, died on Friday after being injured in a house fire, his lawyer told the Las Vegas Review-Journal. He was 46.

The big picture: Hsieh was known for his unique approach to management, and following the 2008 recession his ongoing investment and efforts to revitalize the downtown Las Vegas area.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
6 hours ago - Economy & Business

The unicorn stampede is coming

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Airbnb and DoorDash plan to go public in the next few weeks, capping off a very busy year for IPOs.

What's next: You ain't seen nothing yet.

19 hours ago - World

Maximum pressure campaign escalates with Fakhrizadeh killing

Photo: Fars News Agency via AP

The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran’s military nuclear program, is a new height in the maximum pressure campaign led by the Trump administration and the Netanyahu government against Iran.

Why it matters: It exceeds the capture of the Iranian nuclear archives by the Mossad, and the sabotage in the advanced centrifuge facility in Natanz.