BACK IN MAY PNC, America’s seventh-largest retail bank, sold its 22% stake in BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager, for $17bn. Bill Demchak, its boss, said at the time that worries about the health of the economy had prompted it to divest, in order to “bullet-proof” its balance-sheet against future bad loans. Six months on, Mr Demchak seems to have decided to break cover.
On November 16th PNC announced it would buy the American arm of BBVA, Spain’s second-largest bank, for $11.6bn. The deal may well precipitate a scramble for scale on both sides of the Atlantic: the same day BBVA said it was in merger talks with Sabadell, Spain’s fifth largest lender.
Mr Demchak says the deal was made easier by last week’s news on an effective covid-19 vaccine, post-election stability in America and robust policy responses to the crisis. Read more…..
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