US Banks May Fall Prey to European, Asian Bids
European and Asian banks may bid to take over the four big U.S. investment banks due to the weak dollar, strong European balance sheets and a lack of confidence in Wall Street management, Ralph Silva, research director from TowerGroup, told CNBC Europe on Tuesday.
"I wouldn’t be surprised if Lehman gets sold before the end of this year, they’re prone for it," Silva told "Squawk Box Europe," adding that the weakness of the dollar against the pound and euro make the banks’ already depleted stock even more attractive to European and Asian banks.
"Some of the players that might be in play for this are companies like HSBC or Sandander who have done relatively well through this, they’re well capitalized," Silva said, adding that Royal Bank of Scotland could also act as an acquirer as it has plenty of cash.
Barclays' recent refinancing effort could also be used for snapping up one of the investment giants, Silva said.
The US investment banking market is overcrowded, Silva argues, and tough times with thin margins means the likes of Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are all vulnerable to a takeover or consolidation.
"The European and Asian markets are not following the same trend here. The European banks have kitchen-sinked most of their writedowns so most of the problems have gone away," he added.