Shares of banks and lenders rose amid deal activity. Morgan Stanley agreed to pay $900 million to acquire Solium Capital, which manages the stock that corporate employees receive as part of their pay, expanding its offerings in the stock-plan business and seeking more business with young, affluent investors who sometimes avoid conventional finance. Mortgage servicer Ditech Holding filed for bankruptcy protection for the second time in less than two years, blaming rising interest rates for a decline in business and the weight of its own debt payments. Shares of Italian banks rose after central bank data showed a sharp drop in bad loans on their balance sheets in the fourth quarter from a year earlier. Banco BPM shares rose sharply.
-Rob Curran, firstname.lastname@example.org