Merger and Acquisitions Recap: RBS Pressured To Divest US Unit, Canada’s Takeover Drama Widens

The Royal Bank of Scotland (NYSE:RBS) is feeling pressure from government officials in the United Kingdom as well as the Financial Services Authority to divest its RBS Citizens business in the United States as a portion of a reconcentration on the U.K. and also boosting the bank’s cash reserves, says the Wall Street Journal. However, Chief Executive Stephen Hester and the company’s management oppose such a sale which analysts believe could be worth £6.6 billion.

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The acquisition drama in Canada widens as shares of Nexen (NYSE:NXY) tumble following that country’s rejection of the Petronas / Progress Energy (PRQNF.PK) merger over the weekend. Analyst Michael Babad said that, “You’ve got to look at each deal on its own,” as he suggests that the government might view the Cnooc (NYSE:CEO) / Nexen takeover differently than with other recent high-profile rejections. Meanwhile, the Malaysian state oil company Petronas and Progress Energy will meet with Canadian officials to attempt to overturn the unexpected block of the bid. The energy minister of Malaysia said that Petronas is “very serious” about going ahead with an acquisition and that, “I’m sure they will do whatever needs to be done as a company.”

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