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Credit Suisse buys Morgan Stanley's European private bank

Credit Suisse buys Morgan Stanley's European private bank

 Credit Suisse said on Wednesday it would buy Morgan Stanley's wealth management arm in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, with total assets under management of $13 billion.

"The acquisition will add scale to the bank's core growth markets in EMEA including the UK, Italy, Nordics, Russia and the Middle East," Credit Suisse said in a statement.

Details of the deal - one of Credit Suisse's first notable acquisitions since it bought out the remainder of Brazilian investment fund Hedging-Griffo in 2011 - were not disclosed. It said it expected to complete the purchase later this year.

The acquisition does not include any Swiss activities.

Credit Suisse's 2011 acquisition of HSBC's private bank in Japan was considerably smaller, with assets of $2.7 billion.

For Morgan Stanley, the move represents an intensified focus on wealth management in the United States, where chief executive James Gorman is hoping for more stable returns to help offset volatility from trading and investment banking.

In January, the US bank's wealth management division reported a 17 per cent pretax profit margin, beating an internal target months ahead of schedule.

Copyright @ Thomson Reuters 2013

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