Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Scotiabank to Buy Costa Rica Bank for $293.5 Million

Scotiabank to Buy Bank Interfin

NEW YORK (AP) -- One of Canada's largest retail and commercial banks, Toronto-based Bank of Nova Scotia, or Scotiabank, said Tuesday it agreed to acquire the largest private bank in Costa Rica, Corporacion Interfin, for roughly $293.5 million.

The acquisition is expected to close in about two months, and will be undertaken through a public share offering.

Scotiabank said it has had a presence in Costa Rica since 1995, where its subsidiary has 17 branches and 300 employees.

Separately, credit ratings agency Moody's Investors Services affirmed its stable outlook on Scotiabank after the company announced the Interfin acquisition, and kept its long-term deposit rating at "Aa3," and its financial strength rating at "B."

U.S.-traded shares of Bank of Nova Scotia were down 57 cents at $40.44 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

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