Wachovia takeover dents Wells Fargo Q4 balance sheet

Hampered by its move to bolster credit loss reserves, Wells Fargo registered a $2.55 billion loss in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Over 2008, Wells Fargo built up its reserves against credit losses by $8.14 billion to $21.7 billion, which it estimates covers 12 months of predicted losses on consumer loans and 24 months of predicted losses on commercial and commercial real estate loans.

Its acquisition of Wachovia, which was completed on December 31, also affected results, swinging to a $11.17 billio

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