Citigroup is to acquire ABN Amro's direct custody, securities clearing and fund services businesses in certain European and Asian markets. The deal, which will take in around 550 corporate and institutional accounts, will add around $7.3 trillion to Citigroup's custody portfolio. The purchase price for the ABN unit has yet to be disclosed.
Deutsche is the latest bank to get a license to trade derivatives in China and is expected to start marketing to Chinese corporates in just a matter of weeks.
Former Enron chairman and chief executive Ken Lay will have to take his chances and face trial with other former Enron executives. Although a US federal judge has ruled that Lay can be tried separately on four charges, the ex-Enron boss has also been ordered to face a second trial, on fraud and conspiracy charges, with former colleagues Jeff Skilling and Richard Causey.
Lay had argued that there was very little overlap between the charges faced by himself and Skilling and Causey and he wanted a separate trial as he thought that it would be less complicated and conclude fairly quickly. As it is, Lay is likely to be involved in a media-frenzy type trial which may go on for months.
And finally, Lazard. Bruce Wasserstein is said to lack the support of influential Italian banker/partner Gerardo Braggiotti in his quest to IPO the firm. All the same, the smart money is on the IPO proceeding notwithstanding how Braggiotti feels.