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Two blue-chip companies drop UBS as their corporate broking adviser

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

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

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

BAE replaced UBS with Morgan Stanley as its corporate broking adviser, the report added.

UBS had last year been replaced with Bank of America Merrill Lynch as one of the corporate advisers for Standard Chartered Plc.

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 (S$1.07 billion) to British and Swiss authorities and a US regulator to settle a probe into the attempted manipulation of foreign exchange rates.

Representatives of BAE were not immediately available for comment outside regular UK business hours.

Mathew Cole from STI Consulting, advisers to Smith & Nephew and a spokesperson for UBS declined to comment.

REUTERS