La Mortgage Is in the Mail?

French postal service La Poste wants to move beyond plain-vanilla banking and into broader financial products

In many European countries, going to the post office can be a multitask errand. Mail your letters and do your banking, all in one quick stop. That's because in Germany, France, Britain, and the Netherlands, among other countries, the postal service doubles as a private bank. And it's no small-time operation: France's La Poste counts some 28 million customers, making it the country's second-biggest bank behind another government-run bank, Caisse d'Epargne.

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