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Unrealistic pricing preventing Raymond James from making deals, CEO says

Raymond James Financial Inc. continues to look for acquisitions actively, but pricing has made it difficult for the company to reach agreements with sellers, Chairman and CEO Paul Reilly said during an earnings conference call.

It is an interesting environment because many companies are talking about a sale, Reilly said, but he added that several potential deals have failed because targets are not factoring in valuation variables such as discounted interest rates and market volatility.

"They seem to be looking at this last year's environment as if it's going to continue for the next 10 years," he said.

In the past, Raymond James has grown by acquisition, and earlier this year the company completed a deal for the wealth management-focused investment bank Silver Lane Advisors LLC.

Reilly said his company will remain disciplined. He noted that an economic downturn could lead to reduced seller expectations and more opportunities for Raymond James.

"It's been a frustrating year as we've had some very good opportunities that didn't transact anywhere," he said.