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RBS Trio Doubles ABN Stake to over 8%: FT

A group led by Royal Bank of Scotland has doubled its stake in ABN Amro to more than 8%, cutting the cost of its takeover bid for the bank by about 1%, the Financial Times reported on Wednesday.

The group, which includes Belgian-Dutch group Fortis and Spain's Santander, built up a stake of more than 4% of ABN's share capital, on top of its existing 4% stake via a series of derivatives trades, the newspaper reported.

The group is seeking to acquire ABN, with its offer currently worth about 37.76 euros per ABN share versus a rival offer of about 31 euros per ABN share from Britain's Barclays.

Either bid would be the world's biggest bank takeover.

ABN shares were flat at the open Wednesday.

The share trading is thought to have in effect reduced the purchase price of ABN by 600 million euros-700 million euros ($844.7 million-$985.5 million) or about 1% of the total consideration, the Financial Times said.