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Capital Markets

Banks hire corporate brokers to win deals

Once derided as a UK anachronism, corporate broking is now the hottest game in the City. Morgan Stanley is the latest player to try to muscle in.

A success story everyone wants

Big interest in a discarded toy

MORGAN STANLEY IS the latest bulge-bracket investment bank to try to muscle in on the UK corporate broking scene, poaching a team of seven from Merrill Lynch at the end of April. The hiring continued into May with the new team, headed by Paul Baker, formerly the co-head of corporate broking at Merrill, hiring an additional two senior executives from CSFB and two junior executives from UBS. Morgan Stanley also transferred two people internally to the new unit and plans to recruit another two to create a team of 15.

This substantial investment by Morgan Stanley to jump-start a business currently based on one FTSE100 client shows clearly the importance that international banks across the City now attach to a business that many had previously derided as a peculiar British anachronism.

The decision is the result of a strategic rethink in Morgan Stanley about its business in the UK, the largest investment banking market outside the US, which began with the appointment of Simon Robey as the bank's first ever UK country head earlier this year.

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