Fund manager Artemis could be about to change hands for €1bn (£760m), The Telegraph reveals.
It is understood Dutch-Belgian bank Fortis has been studying a sale of its stake in Artemis, which manages around £15.1bn of assets for a wide range of retail investors. Investment bank UBS is advising on a possible deal, according to sources.
Artemis's management, led by chief executive and founder Mark Tyndall, is thought to be interested in carrying out a management buyout of the fund management company.
Fortis ended up with a significant stake in Artemis after acquiring ABN Amro's retail, commercial banking and wealth and asset management arm as part of the €70bn takeover of the Dutch bank as part of a consortium that also included Royal Bank of Scotland and Spain's Santander. ABN Amro acquired a 58% shareholding in Artemis in 2002 and merged it with its own fund management business.
ROYAL BANK OF Scotland reported a 9% rise in underlying profits to £10.3bn for 2007, despite a £2.5bn writedown related to turmoil in global credit markets, according to The Times.
RBS, the UK's second largest bank, faced a £1.6bn writedown related to losses from its US mortgage and leveraged finance exposures. ABN Amro, the Dutch banking giant it recently acquired, suffered an additional £900m.
The bank said the losses contributed to a 2% fall in profits from its global markets and investment banking division to £3.7bn.
FURTHER CUTS IN US interest rates looked a near certainty last night after figures showed the sales of new homes tumbled in January for the third successive month to a 13-year low and demand for durable goods also slumped, The Guardian reports.
The Federal Reserve chairman, Ben Bernanke, acknowledged the persistent downside risks to growth in the latest of his biannual speeches to Congress.
He added that the Fed would "act in a timely manner as needed to support growth and to provide adequate insurance against downside risks" - which was taken by Wall Street as a sign that more rate cuts will come.
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