Market Chatter-Corporate finance press digest

Mon Feb 4, 2013 10:16am IST

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Feb 4 (Reuters) - The following corporate finance-related stories were reported by media on Monday:

* Royal Bank of Scotland will next week agree a settlement with U.S. and British authorities for its part in a global rate rigging scandal, sources familiar with the situation told Reuters.

* Blackstone, one of the world's largest alternative asset managers, has quietly secured a securities underwriting licence as its expanding capital markets operation strays into investment banking territory, the Financial Times reported.

* RBS is pushing ahead with plans for a 1 billion pound ($1.57 billion) listing of the 316 branches it failed to sell to Santander last year, the Sunday Telegraph said, adding that the bank would remain open to another offer to buy the branches.

* The owners of EE, Britain's biggest mobile network, are close to appointing banks to advise on a flotation, The Sunday Times reported, citing industry and banking sources.

* Heineken is preparing to sell Hartwall, the Finnish arm of the brewer Scottish and Newcastle it bought in 2008, for about 500 million pounds, The Sunday Times reported without citing sources.

* London-listed oil explorer Afren has hired a corporate finance firm to look into selling its oil fields in Kurdistan and east Africa, leaving the group focused on its main assets in Nigeria, The Sunday Times reported.

* Dell Inc is edging closer to an agreement to sell itself to a buyout consortium led by Michael Dell, its founder and chief executive, and private equity firm Silver Lake Partners in a deal that could top $24 billion, people familiar with the matter said.

* Deutsche Bank AG will cap bonus payouts for 2012 at 300,000 euros ($410,900) per employee, a source familiar with the development said.

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