Spain Bank Aces Stress Test

Europe mostly flat (Greece up 2.3 percent), euro behaving, U.S. futures were calm ahead of the quadruple witching expiration.

Spanish bank Banco Santander is up 1 percent on several pieces of news:

1) a spokesman for Spain's Prime Minister remarked that the Spanish bank performed strongly during the recent stress tests, saying the bank had "one of the best" results. The Committee of European Banking Supervisors is expected to provide details of the results in the coming weeks.they have the best ranking so far in a European bank stress tests, according to a Spanish government source; not clear when the full results of those tests will be published.

2) the bank also confirmed they have made an offer for 318 British branches of Royal Bank of Scotland.

They already have a strong presence in the UK. Santander's vice-chairman caused a small stir yesterday when he said they were talking with M&T Bank, based in Buffalo, NY, about possibly merging its U.S. operations with them.


1) Walgreen jumps 9 percent and CVS Caremark rises 5 percent after the two companies agreed to a pharmacy benefits deal. Terms were not disclosed, but shareholders gave a sigh of relief on the news which will allow members of CVS Caremark's prescription program to continue filling their prescriptions at Walgreen pharmacies.

BP rises 2 percent despite seeing its credit rating cut yet again. For the second time this month, Moody's lowered BP's long-term credit rating by 3 levels on continued concerns of escalating liability costs.

Today's downgrade was the third of the week for the oil company - yesterday S&P cut its rating for the second time this month, while Fitch downgraded the company's rating on Tuesday.

3) IPO market remains shaky: Motricity (MOTR) raised just under $50 million in its Nasdaq-listed IPO. The mobile data/Internet company priced just 5 million shares at $10 each. However, that was below the anticipated offering of 5.87 million shares between $10-$11, which was reduced from initial expectations for 6.75 million shares priced between $14 and $16.

4) finally, some inflows: AMG says equity funds realized significant inflows to the tune of $11.4 billion. That nearly offsets the $16.7 billion in outflows for the week ended May 26. Still, year to date equity funds have seen outflows of $1.6 billion.

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