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Sector Update: Financial

By: MT Newswires
Posted: 2/20/2014 1:40:00 PM
Referenced Stocks: CME

Financial stocks have reversed earlier losses and have turned narrowly higher, with the NYSE Financial Sector Index rising 0.1% and the S&P Financial 100 Index gaining about 0.3%.

In company news, shares of CME Group Inc. ( CME ) were lower Thursday amid new comments from Deutsche Boerse trying to shoot down speculation the American futures and options exchange may be readying for a hostile takeover of its German counterpart.

"The chances of a hostile takeover succeeding in our sector are zero. Even friendly ones have been difficult," Deutsche Boerse CEO Reto Francioni said during a news conference in Frankfurt in reply to a question, according to a Reuters report.

CME is said to have approached the German exchange operator last year about a friendly combination, but Deutsche Boerse rebuffed the CME. "Our position hasn't changed," Francioni said.

CME shares were down about 1% at $74.01 each in recent trade, slightly more than halfway to the downside of the stock's trading range Thursday. It has a 52-week range of $57.49 to $84.71 a share.

In other sector news,

(+) PRAA, (+16.5%) Agrees to acquire Aktiv Kapital in a $880 mln combination of cash plus $170 mln in seller financing, $435 mln in new borrowing and accessing up to $212 mln from accordian feature of credit facility. Deal is seen as immediately adding to PRAA earnings.

(-) OCN, (-5.5%) Reportedly pitching $136 mln bond deal backed by a pool of mortgage servicing rights - assets that give companies the right to collect payments on home loans in return for a small slice of the income, according to the Financial Times.