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Goldman buying PE-backed Capital Vision; Wells seeks to settle tax credit probe

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Goldman buying PE-backed Capital Vision; Wells seeks to settle tax credit probe

Confirming a recent media report, West Street Capital Partners VII, a fund managed by Goldman Sachs Group Inc.'s merchant banking division, agreed to acquire Vienna, Va.-based Capital Vision Services from private equity firm Altas Partners LP and Canadian pension fund Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. The transaction terms were not disclosed in the news release but The Wall Street Journal said that the deal for Capital Vision, which manages MyEyeDr. optometry practices, is reportedly valued at $2.7 billion, including debt. Altas and Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec had purchased Capital Vision for $775 million, the Journal noted.

Private equity giant Blackstone Group LP is purchasing Singapore-based GLP Pte. Ltd.'s industrial warehouses in the U.S. for $18.7 billion. Following the deal, considered the largest-ever global private real estate transaction globally, Blackstone will become one of the largest owners of U.S. logistics assets, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Wells Fargo & Co. is negotiating a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice related to the latter's investigation into the bank's procurement of low-income housing tax credits, sources for Bloomberg News say. The bank's settlement with the Justice Department could exceed $100 million, according to the report. The probe focuses on whether the bank conspired with developers to submit low-ball bids on the tax credits in exchange for providing them better loan terms or agreeing to finance bad deals.

Goldman Sachs President John Waldron said at a conference in New York that the bank will expand its investment banking business with midsized firms, valued at less than $2 billion, by gaining 1,700 new clients in the next three years.

Texas-based Enloe State Bank, a unit of Entex Bancshares Inc., is the first bank to fail in the U.S. in 2019, which is estimated to cost $27 million to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Bowie, Texas-based Legend Bank NA will assume the insured deposits of Enloe State Bank for a 0.51% premium and will also purchase about $5.2 million of the failed bank's assets. The last bank failure occurred in 2017 with the closing of Chicago-based Washington Federal Bank for Savings.

Facebook Inc. has started talks with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission over its plan for a digital currency, the Financial Times reports. The social media platform has also reportedly spoken to the U.S. Treasury to offer updates regarding the financial instrument.

Asiff Hirji, president and COO of San Francisco-based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Inc., has left the firm, Bloomberg reports. Emilie Choi, vice president of business, data and international, will succeed named Hirji as COO.

In other parts of the world

Asia Pacific: China explains Baoshang Bank takeover; Mitsubishi UFJ cuts London workforce

Europe: Danske selling Estonian unit; Covéa sues Credit Suisse; crypto vigilance sought

Middle East & Africa: Zimbabwe clinches IMF deal; Ghana kicks off microfinance sector cleanup

Now featured on S&P Global Market Intelligence

Trade spats cause economists to shift Fed calls, with some seeing rate cuts: Escalating trade spats between the U.S. and other countries are increasing the chatter that the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates this year instead of staying on hold.

Minority-designated banks continue to dwindle with sale of Miami lender: The number of minority-designated banks in the U.S. dropped to 149 in 2018 from 207 in 2009, and another will fall off the list when the pending sale of Miami-based Continental National Bank closes.

The day ahead

Early morning futures indicators pointed to a lower opening for the U.S. market.

In Asia, the Hang Seng was down 0.08% to 26,880.45, and the Nikkei 225 fell 0.92% to 20,410.88.

In Europe, around midday, the FTSE 100 was down 0.39% to 7,133.74, and the Euronext 100 was down 0.39% to 1,018.09.

On the macro front

The PMI manufacturing index, the ISM manufacturing index and the construction spending report are due out today.

Click here to read about today's financial markets, setting out the factors driving stocks, bonds and currencies around the world ahead of the New York open.

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