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First Republic Bank Explores Strategic Options Including Sale



Sale among Strategic Options

First Republic Bank is exploring strategic options including a sale, according to sources. The bank is also considering options to improve its liquidity. Some sources suggest that larger rivals may show interest in acquiring the bank, although no decision has yet been made and First Republic may still opt to remain independent. A spokesperson for First Republic Bank said it would not comment on speculation.

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Strong Liquidity Position

Last week, First Republic said it had over $70bn in unused liquidity to fund operations, thanks in part to its relationship with the Federal Reserve and JPMorgan Chase. Despite this, First Republic’s share price fell 21% on Wednesday, reaching a decade-low of $31.16 in New York. The bank specializes in private banking and wealth management and takes pride in its diversified clientele, with no one sector representing more than 9% of its business deposits.

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Contagion Fears Hit Banking Sector

Following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), fears of contagion have hit the banking sector. First Republic’s share price halved in pre-market trading on Monday, while Wall Street is set to open lower on Thursday. However, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said that the US banking system remains sound and that Americans can have confidence that their deposits are safe, despite emergency actions taken following two large bank failures.

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