SNS Reaal in talks to sell private banking
AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Dutch banking and insurance group SNS Reaal SR.AS is in talks to sell a private banking business to rival Bank ten Cate, as it battles to avoid a second state bailout following huge losses on property loans.
SNS Reaal said on Friday its brokerage subsidiary SNS Securities was in talks to sell its private banking business, which employs about 25 people. A spokesman declined to comment on the private banking business's financial performance.
SNS Reaal said in November it expected to announce restructuring measures, possibly including asset sales, a share issue, and the conversion of state aid into shares, early this year.
Analysts expect SNS Reaal will need a second state bailout after booking more than 1.3 billion euros ($1.7 billion) of net losses on its property loans since 2009.
The Dutch government pumped 750 million euros into the company in 2008 at the height of the credit crisis.
SNS Reaal has sought to reassure customers their money was safe amid media reports about its uncertain future.
A statement posted on Thursday told account holders their deposits were covered by the country's deposit protection scheme.
Bank ten Cate manages more than 1 billion euros for its clients, and employs about 35 people, a spokesman for the company said.
At 1615 GMT, SNS Reaal shares were up 4.8 percent at 0.91 euros, outperforming a 0.2 percent rise in the Amsterdam midcap index .AMX.
($1 = 0.7486 euro)
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