Will Barclay's gain from ABN loss?

It seems likely that Barclay’s will admit defeat later today, and bow out of the takeover battle for Dutch bank ABN Amro. The largest-ever cross-border banking takeover in Europe will still go ahead, but led by a consortium backed by Fred ‘The Shred’ Goodwin’s RBS instead.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010
But some in the City suggest that Barclay’s loss could actually be its gain. RBS - which has a solid track-record of aggressively-pursued acquisitions behind it – and its partners will end up paying a very substantial £48bn, mostly in hard cash, for the bank. Given the current depressed state of the debt markets – and consequent impact on the share price of both buyer and target – many in the business are inevitably asking ‘Is it worth it?’

Barclay’s shares-based bid was scuppered by its own falling stock price; once the dust has settled, this fact may well turn out to have been a blessing in disguise. 

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