TIAA’S pending purchase of EverBank Financial in Jacksonville, Fla., portends the rise of a powerful new competitor for banks.

The insurance and retirement savings behemoth had spent six years quietly building its own bank, TIAA Direct, before agreeing to plunk down $2.5 billion in cash for the $27 billion-asset EverBank. The deal, officially unveiled Aug. 8th, would give the New York company access to billions of dollars in low-cost deposits.

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