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Financials Up As Deal Activity Offsets Weak Earnings For Global Banks -- Financials Roundup

08/03/2020 | 05:13pm EST

Shares of banks and other lenders and money managers rose as a wave of Wall Street dealmaking offset weak earnings for global banks.

HSBC shares fell after the Asia-focused global bank posted earnings short of investors' expectations, complicating turnaround efforts under a new chief executive.

French bank Societe Generale said it would retreat from investment-banking ventures after write-downs at its structured product business helped to generate a surprising quarterly loss, a major black eye as most other global investment banks thrived on the recent market volatility. The French bank had sold complex hedging instruments that were badly affected by the explosion in volatility during the March crash.

CNA Financial posted lower-than-expected adjusted earnings for the second quarter and booked $301 million in catastrophe losses, most of which were related to the pandemic.

CNA parent Loews Corp. swung to a second-quarter loss after the pandemic weighed on the U.S. company's insurance, energy and lodging investments. Shares of both CNA and Loews fell slightly.

Chicago money manager GCM Grosvenor is merging with a special purpose acquisition company in a deal that will take the Chicago asset manager public. The firm will combine with a SPAC affiliated with financial-services firm Cantor Fitzgerald known as CF Finance Acquisition Corp.

In 2020, there has been a "surge" in special-acquisition deals, seen as "blank check IPOs with embedded put options," said analysts at brokerage Goldman Sachs, in a note to clients.

Another area of growth on Wall Street is hedge funds, with brokers such as Goldman and Morgan Stanley and independent stockpickers such as Gaurav Kapadia among those launching new funds, The Wall Street Journal reported.


Write to Rob Curran at rob.curran@dowjones.com

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
CF FINANCE ACQUISITION CORP. 3.32% 10.9 End-of-day quote.0.00%
CNA FINANCIAL CORPORATION 0.59% 36.41 Delayed Quote.-19.19%
HSBC HOLDINGS PLC 0.31% 422.65 Delayed Quote.-28.81%
LOEWS CORPORATION 1.71% 43.26 Delayed Quote.-18.80%
MORGAN STANLEY 1.45% 64.935 Delayed Quote.25.31%
THE GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP, INC. 1.62% 239.03 Delayed Quote.3.36%
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