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Two blue-chip companies drop UBS as corporate broking adviser: FT

[LONDON] UBS Group AG, Switzerland's biggest bank, lost two more blue-chip corporate broking clients, the Financial Times reported, citing people familiar with the situation.

British defense contractor BAE Systems Plc and Smith & Nephew Plc, Europe's largest maker of artificial joints, have both dropped UBS as their corporate broking adviser, the newspaper said.

BAE confirmed in an email to Reuters that it had dropped UBS in favour of Morgan Stanley as its corporate broking adviser.

Smith & Nephew selected Bank of America Merrill Lynch as one of its corporate brokers along with JPMorgan Cazenove, which will remain as the other broker, the Financial Times reported.

Standard Chartered Plc last year replaced UBS with Bank of America Merrill Lynch as one of its corporate advisers.

Corporate brokers act as a link between a listed company and its investors and can be a way into more lucrative advisory business, such as fundraising and mergers and acquisitions.

In November 2014, UBS had agreed to pay 774 million Swiss francs (US$803.07 million) to British and Swiss authorities and a US regulator to settle a probe into the attempted manipulation of foreign exchange rates.

Mathew Cole from STI Consulting, advisers to Smith & Nephew, declined to comment.