* Exit from fixed income business could affect 160 employees
* Sold mortgage lending unit to Ocwen Financial in Feb
* Shareholder Clinton Group seeks to nominate new directors
April 10 Gleacher & Co Inc said it was
in talks regarding a possible merger, less than two months after
it suspended its search for a buyer, adding to uncertainty that
has already cost the investment bank clients and employees.
Gleacher said in February that it had given up its search
for a buyer and for fresh capital. It had also rebuffed an offer
from Stifel Financial Corp.
Gleacher shares rose as much as 30 percent to $0.88 on the
Nasdaq on Wednesday, but pared some of their gains to trade up 7
percent at $0.73. The stock has lost 13 percent of its value
since the beginning of the year.
The investment bank has seen more turmoil in the last two
years than in the preceding two decades.
Gleacher has replaced its executive team, closed its
equities business, sold its mortgage-origination unit and fired
more than 100 traders and bankers in the past year, and posted a
slew of losses, weakening client confidence in the firm.
In its annual filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission, Gleacher said a number of its trading customers have
reduced or suspended their business with the company and that
new investment banking mandates had dwindled.
Gleacher, which now has few businesses left, also said on
Wednesday that it is exiting its fixed-income business,
affecting 160 employees.
The company, founded by merger and acquisition veteran Eric
Gleacher, had 220 employees as of March 15.
Gleacher also said shareholder Clinton Group was looking to
nominate a slate of directors, including Chief Executive Thomas
Hughes, at an upcoming annual shareholder meeting.
Clinton Group held a 0.22 percent stake in the company at
the end of last year, according to Thomson Reuters data.