SunTrust Banks Incorporated

L.A. money management firms scrap $2.6-billion merger

Two multibillion-dollar money managers in Century City have called off their $2.55-billion merger, a deal that would have created one of the country's biggest private equity firms.

Behind the breakup? A continued slump in oil prices and weakness in energy investments.

Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, the firm that would have been acquired, specializes in the energy sector. Until recently, that made it look like an attractive pickup for acquirer Ares Management, which has few energy investments and wanted to expand its investment offerings.

But Kayne Anderson's four energy mutual funds have lost more than 40% of their value over the last year. Much of that loss has come...