'Heir apparent' at PA's top bank

PNC Financial Services Group, the biggest bank based in Pennsylvania, has put senior vice chairman William "Bill" Demchak in charge of retail branches and asset management, to add to his previous corporate and risk management roles. The move sets Demchak above PNC President and retail chief Joseph C. Guyaux, and asset management boss Robert Q. Reilly. Announcement here.

The move will "reinforce the belief that Mr. Demciak is the heir apparent" to CEO James Rohr, though "our best guess" is that Rohr will keep his job "for a few years," writes Sandler O'Neill + Partners analyst R. Scott Siefers in a report to clients today.

PNC is one of the few US banks that has been relatively prosperous through hard times, combining opportunistic acquisitions (National City Bank, Riggs National) with a conservative credit culture that keeps it out of serious trouble but doesn't always stimulate the local economy (a Philadelphia banking lawyer told me this morning the bank's initials stand for 'Please, No Customers', though that's exactly what someone turned down for a dodgy loan would call it, no?)