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In Play Today: German banks urged to merge; BBVA gets offers for insurance biz

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In Play Today: German banks urged to merge; BBVA gets offers for insurance biz

S&P Global Market Intelligence presents In Play Today, a periodic summary of potential deal activity in the financial sectors of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. This summary, which is displayed according to the location of a target's headquarters, is based on information obtained by S&P Global Market Intelligence and may not be inclusive of all potential deal activity.

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* The German savings banks association, DSGV, is reportedly urging state-owned institutions Landesbank Hessen-Thüringen Girozentrale and DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale to begin talks on a potential merger, which could create the largest state-owned institution in Germany, with €263.4 billion in total assets, based on end-2018 figures for both banks.

* Top investors in London Stock Exchange Group PLC want global exchanges, including Intercontinental Exchange Inc., to make a last-ditch offer for the British bourse, after Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd. decided to back out of a potential £31.6 billion takeover bid, The Daily Telegraph reported. The exchanges have up to seven weeks to forward an offer for LSE before shareholders approve its acquisition of Refinitiv in November, after which LSE will become too big to buy.

* Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA confirmed that it has received offers from "several interested parties" for its nonlife insurance business in several geographies. German insurer Allianz Group was reported to be in pole position to strike a deal with BBVA, although, U.S.-based Liberty Mutual was in the running as well.

* U.S.-based Vista Equity Partners LLC is exploring the possible sale of an up to 50% stake in London-based financial technology firm Finastra Group Holdings Ltd., sources told Bloomberg News. Finastra could be valued at more than $10 billion, including debt, in a potential sale.

* The Italian government is discussing a plan with the European Commission to spin off about €10 billion of Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA's bad loans into a separate company in an attempt to make the troubled Italian lender an attractive target for potential buyers, sources told Reuters.

* Italy's Generali is in discussions to purchase the Central European assets of MetLife Inc., insiders told Bloomberg News.

* British insurer MS Amlin PLC is considering a sale of its aviation book, which consists of about $100 million in premiums, Insurance Insider reported, citing sources.

* UniCredit SpA is reportedly selling a portfolio of nonperforming home mortgages worth €5 billion and is set to make an announcement related to the transaction in November.

* U.S. private equity firm Hellman & Friedman LLC is considering a potential bid for a stake in Brussels-based securities settlement company Euroclear SA/NV, insiders told the Financial Times. An offer could value Euroclear at as much as £5 billion.