Capital One (COF) Buys Discover (DFS) for $35bn Creating Top US Credit Card Firm

By Patricia Miller


In this article

  • Loading...
  • Want to see what you should be buying? Check out our top picks.

Capital One and Discover merge in a $35B deal, creating a credit card giant that shakes up the industry. Exciting prospects for retail investors.

Capital One logo on smartphone screen on a keyboard. Capital One Financial Corporation is an American bank holding company. Capital One, Capital One Finance.
Capital One to Acquire Discover in $35 Billion Deal, Creating Largest US Credit Card Company

What You Need To Know

Capital One Financial (NYSE: COF) has announced its plans to acquire Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) in a $35 billion all-stock deal, forming the largest credit card company in the US by loan volume. This acquisition aims to create a stronger competitor to major financial institutions on Wall Street.

Under the terms of the agreement, Discover Financial shareholders will receive Capital One shares valued at nearly $140, which is a significant premium to the previous closing price of Discover shares. The deal will likely be completed by late 2024 or early 2025, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals.

This merger will bring together two prominent consumer-finance brands and position the combined entity ahead of JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup in terms of US credit-card loan volume. The acquisition is expected to result in pre-tax synergies of $2.7 billion and will allow Capital One to tap into Discover's prime customer base.

Sign up for Investing Intel Newsletter

Why This Is Important for Retail Investors

  1. Diversification Opportunities: The merger between Capital One and Discover creates a larger and more diverse credit card company. This offers retail investors the opportunity to diversify their investment portfolios by gaining exposure to a consolidated entity with a stronger foothold in the market.

  2. Enhanced Profit Potential: The combination of the two companies' resources and customer bases may lead to improved profitability. Retail investors can potentially benefit from increased earnings and dividends as the merged entity takes advantage of synergies and economies of scale.

  3. Increased Competitiveness: With the merger, Capital One and Discover are poised to become a formidable competitor in the credit card industry, challenging the dominance of Visa and Mastercard. This heightened competition may lead to innovation, improved services, and better rewards for customers, which can directly impact the investment prospects of retail investors.

  4. Potential Stock Price Upside: The acquisition deal involves Capital One issuing shares to Discover shareholders at a premium. This suggests that retail investors who hold shares in Discover may see an increase in their investment value as a result of the deal, offering a potential upside opportunity.

  5. Industry Disruption: The merger between two major credit card companies has the potential to disrupt the industry landscape, possibly leading to changes in market dynamics and consumer behavior. Retail investors who closely follow the financial sector can benefit from staying ahead of industry trends and anticipating investment opportunities that arise from this disruption.

How Can You Use This Information?

Here are some of the investing ideas that can be explored using this information:

Value Investing

Value investing searches for undervalued companies that trade for less than their intrinsic values, with the expectation that they will eventually be recognized by the market.

Retail investors can analyze the potential value created by the merger between Capital One and Discover, considering factors such as the combined company's financials, market position, and potential synergies.

Growth Investing

Growth investing focuses on stocks of companies expected to grow at an above-average rate compared to other stocks in the market; learn more in our article titled 'What is Growth Investing?'.

The COF and DFS merger could offer growth opportunities for retail investors as the consolidated entity aims to compete with industry leaders and capitalize on evolving consumer trends in the credit card market.

Dividend Investing

Dividend investing targets companies that regularly distribute a portion of their earnings to shareholders as dividends.

Investors may assess the dividend prospects of the merged company, considering factors such as the potential increase in profitability and the likelihood of sustaining or increasing dividend payouts.

Sector Rotation

Sector Rotation is the practice of shifting investment capital from one industry sector to another to take advantage of the economic cycle.

The merger between Capital One and Discover may prompt retail investors to reconsider their allocation within the financial sector, as the combined company's increased size and market share could have implications for sector performance and dynamics.


Diversification spreads investments across various assets to reduce risk and volatility in a portfolio.

With this COF DFS merger, retail investors may consider including the consolidated credit card company in their investment portfolio to achieve diversification, especially within the financial sector, with exposure to a broader range of customer segments and product offerings.

Read What Others Are Saying

Bloomberg: Capital One to Buy Discover for $35 Billion in Year's Biggest Deal

WSJ: Capital One Is Buying Discover Financial - WSJ

FT: Capital One agrees to buy Discover Financial for $35bn

Sign up for Investing Intel Newsletter

What you should read next:

Popular ETFs

Some investors prefer to invest in stocks via an exchange-traded fund for ease and reduced risk. Some popular ETFs include the following:

  • Large-Caps: Vanguard Mega Cap ETF (MGC)

  • Mid-Caps: Vanguard Mid-Cap ETF (VO)

  • Small-Caps: Vanguard Small-Cap ETF (VB)

  • Growth: iShares Core S&P U.S. Growth ETF (IUSG)

  • Value: iShares Core S&P US Value ETF (IUSV)

Explore more on these topics:



This article does not provide any financial advice and is not a recommendation to deal in any securities or product. Investments may fall in value and an investor may lose some or all of their investment. Past performance is not an indicator of future performance.

Patricia Miller does not hold any position in the stock(s) and/or financial instrument(s) mentioned in the above article.

Patricia Miller has not been paid to produce this piece by the company or companies mentioned above.

Digitonic Ltd, the owner of, does not hold a position or positions in the stock(s) and/or financial instrument(s) mentioned in the above article.

Digitonic Ltd, the owner of, has not been paid for the production of this piece by the company or companies mentioned above.

Sign up for Investing Intel Newsletter