Fox-Pitt, Lehman, Merrill, Rothschild, Wachovia

Financial News reports that niche investment bank Fox-Pitt Kelton has been put up for sale by parent Swiss Re. According to the newspaper, Evercore Partners have been appointed to handle the sale.

Lehman has posted a second straight year of record profits. The Wall Street firm's Q4 net income rose 41% to $823m. Profit for the year came in at $3.3bn, as Lehman enjoyed record revenues from every business in every region.

Merrill Lynch says that it plans to double investment banking revenues from Asia in the next three years. The firm got $2.3bn in revenues from Australia, Japan and the rest of Asia in 2004.

Rothschild is dominating the advisory league on French target LBOs this year. The firm has advised of 15 deals valued at $4.7bn, 62% of the market.

Finally, a rumour of the recent Wachovia corporate trust and institutional services unit sale appeared 13 days before it was made public on Yahoo!Finance, an internet message board. The anonymous poster claimed that his cousin worked at Wachovia. It has been reported that several people who posted on the site were advised by Yahoo that the company had turned over the names of their ISPs to the bank. The unit eventually went to US Bancorp for $720m.

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