Times Staff and Wire Reports

Lloyds Bank, TSB Group in Merger Talks: The combined entity would create Britain's largest provider of banking and insurance services, with a market value of more than $22 billion, the banks said. But analysts said Lloyds' valuation of TSB at $4.87 per share, or $7.8 billion, may be a little low and that that could open the door to a rival bid. Although the banks were presenting the proposal as a merger, Lloyds would be by far the dominant partner if the deal went through. Lloyds and TSB shareholders would end up owning about 70% and 30%, respectively. The new bank would have assets of $222 billion.

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