Travelers said it will acquire Dillon, Read & Co.

The sale, for $157.5 million, will end private ownership of one of the last remaining major private investment banks. Dillon, Read is 156 years old and the 32nd-largest firm in its field. It has a history that includes helping finance such future industrial giants as Chrysler Corp. For Hartford, Conn.-based Travelers Corp., the transaction will mark the insurer's entrance onto Wall Street, following the lead of half a dozen other insurers that have broadened their financial reach by acquiring securities firms. Dillon, Read said it expects to benefit from increased access to investment capital.

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