Official: Standard Chartered, RBS Deal Breaks Down

An attempt by Standard Chartered to buy Asian assets of the Royal Bank of Scotland has failed due to disagreements over how much it should pay for the deal, an official briefed on the negotiations said Saturday.

Standard Chartered PLC had hoped to acquire banking branches and loan books held by the Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC in India, Malaysia and China for between $200 and $250 million, but RBS held out for more, the official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to make an official statement.

"At the end of the day we simply couldn't agree on a price," he said.

Calls seeking comment from RBS were not immediately returned late Saturday.

The deal's collapse would be a blow to RBS, which is trying to sell its nonessential assets in a bid to recover from its near-collapse last year, when it was bailed out by the British government and posted the largest-ever loss in the country's corporate history.

In August, the Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. said it had agreed to buy some of RBS's Asian businesses _ including wealth management and commercial businesses in Taiwan, Singapore, and Hong Kong _ for $550 million.

Standard Chartered, which posted a record half-year operating profit in August, has been working to raise money to support expansion in key markets in Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

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