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Report: Westpac to explore sale of auto, equipment finance loans

Westpac Banking Corp. has engaged Morgan Stanley to help it conduct a strategic review of its motor finance and equipment finance and corporate debt book, The Australian Financial Review reported Aug. 8, citing unidentified sources.

The strategic review is likely to include a partial or full sale of the portfolio, which primarily consists of assets the Australian bank acquired from Lloyds Banking Group Plc for A$1.45 billion in 2014. The assets included a A$3.9 billion motor vehicle finance loan book, A$2.9 billion of equipment finance loans and a corporate debt portfolio of A$1.6 billion.

The review will revolve around Westpac's auto leasing loan book, which is worth about A$5 billion, according to the report.

The bank has not yet made a decision on whether to sell all or part of the business, the sources said.

As of Aug. 7, US$1 was equivalent to A$1.26.