4 Financial Stock Stories to Kick Off the Second Half

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS): Current price $24.59

Morgan Stanley announced that its money-management arm raised $770 million for a pool that will acquire stakes in private-equity funds in the secondary market. The division said Monday in a statement that it surpassed its $600 million target for the fund, which is called Morgan Stanley Global Secondary Opportunities Fund LP II. The statement also indicates that the pool will invest in “off-market” deals like smaller buyouts and special situations. The investors include existing clients of Morgan Stanley Alternative Investment Partners, together with new limited partners which include insurance companies, wealthy individuals, endowments and pension plans.

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MS

Lloyds Banking Group (NYSE:LYG): Current price $3.90

Knowledgeable sources indicate that Lloyds’ Australian division is searching out buyers for an approximate $690 million portfolio of loans. The package is comprised of around 12 to 14 deals, and includes primarily leveraged loans and some real estate debt, according to the sources, who also said that Lloyds has contacted several potential buyers, among which include investment banks, private equity and distressed debt firms, and begun marketing the debt on Monday.

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LYG

The Royal Bank of Scotland Group (NYSE:RBS): Current price $8.56

The government of the United Kingdom’s long-anticipated divestiture of its stakes in RBS and the Lloyds Banking Group nears. The organization which oversees the holdings on behalf of the government, UK Financial Investments, has requested investment banks to make their offers to help sell the stakes in the two lenders, which both got multibillion-dollar bailouts during the financial crisis. The tender offer, released on Thursday, occurs as the future of the government’s holding in both banks is at a turning point.

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RBS

BlackRock  (NYSE:BLK): Current price $256.03

BlackRock’s purchase of Credit Suisse’s exchange-traded funds unit has been formally completed, according to the asset manager’s statement. The  acquisition related to $17.6 billion in assets at the time the agreement was first formally agreed back in January, fixes BlackRock’s iShares as the top provider of ETFsplatform in Europe. The finalization is only days following the United Kingdom’s Office of Fair Trading revelation that it would not refer the transaction to the Competition Commission.

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BLK

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