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Goldman Sachs nears deal to buy United Capital

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Goldman Sachs Group Inc is nearing a deal to buy boutique wealth management firm United Capital Financial Partners Inc for several hundred million dollars, a source told Reuters.

[NEW YORK] Goldman Sachs Group Inc is nearing a deal to buy boutique wealth management firm United Capital Financial Partners Inc for several hundred million dollars, a source told Reuters.

The deal would be Goldman's biggest since the financial crisis and could be announced as soon as Monday, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The acquisition could be worth US$700 million to US$750 million, CNBC reported.

Goldman Sachs declined to comment. United Capital did not immediately respond to Reuters' request for comment.

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United Capital is a California-based investment advisory firm with independent financial advisers in roughly 90 offices in the United States managing about US$23 billion of clients' money.

Goldman has been ramping up efforts to grow its retail client base and deposits in an effort to diversify its revenue streams and lower its cost of wholesale funding.

Marcus, the online retail bank Goldman founded in 2016, now holds US$46 billion in customer deposits in the United States, a figure executives expect to grow by US$10 billion annually.

Later this year, Goldman will launch corporate cash management, which will handle payments and transactions for its corporate clients. The bank will also use the service itself, saving it an estimated US$100 million a year.

Acquiring United Capital would give Goldman several thousand affluent and high net worth clients, a wealth bracket the bank currently does not serve. Goldman's private wealth management division works with ultra-rich, and its Ayco business works with corporate executives.

Ayco recently announced it was expanding an online personal finance service to try to gain the business of its corporate clients' employees.

REUTERS