MOODY'S ASSIGNS A Baa1 RATING TO UNION PLANTER'S BANK, N.A.'S SUBORDINATED NOTES ISSUE AND CHANGES OUTLOOK OF UNION PLANTERS CORPORATION TO POSITIVE
New York, 03-10-98 -- Moody's has assigned a rating of Baa1 to Union Planters Bank, National Association's US$300 million subordinated note issue. Union Planters Bank, National Association is the lead bank of Union Planters Corporation (UPC), which had approximately US$18 billion in assets at year end 1997.
On February 23, 1998 Union Planter's Corporation announced its intention to acquire Magna Group, Inc. in a stock swap transaction valued at approximately $2.3 billion. The new entity will have combined total assets of approximately US$28.5 billion and deposits of US$21.5 billion. While recognizing that this acquisition, in combination with a number of other recent acquisitions, will present a significant challenge to management's ability to integrate the various franchises, the ratings agency stated that the transaction could provide a number of long-term benefits to UPC's franchise. In particular, the acquisition will vault UPC's market presence in the St. Louis market to third place, and diversify its presence into states with higher per capita income levels than its current base. The ratings agency also stated that UPC enjoys solid financial fundamentals, and is well capitalized compared to its peer group. Moody's noted that its outlook for Union Planters Bank, National Association is stable, while it has changed its outlook for Union Planters Corporation to positive.
The following rating was assigned:
Union Planters Bank, National Association's subordinated debt: Baa1
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