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Want to buy a bank? Beware of this common oversight

March 23, 2015
Houston Business Journal

Banks in Houston are definitely revving up to make some deals this year. While wheeling and dealing, there is one component of negotiations that industry players say is often overlooked and can represent quite an expense to the buyer: data processing contracts. "I've seen too many deals break up over huge DP (data processing) contract cancellation fees," said Dan Bass, managing director at Performance Trust Capital Partners LLC.

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Cadence Bancorp finds investors even as energy casts shadow

March 17, 2015
Houston Chronicle

Houston's Cadence Bancorp went looking for capital to pay for growth initiatives and was able to reel in $50 million, despite fears from some investors that low oil prices will hammer banks in markets with a strong energy industry presence. "We really didn't have any trouble finding investors," Paul Murphy, CEO and president of Houston-based Cadence Bancorp, said in an interview. Dan Bass, managing director of investment banking for bank advisory firm Performance Trust Capital Partners, said the $50 million is a good sign for the bank.

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Chicago's Gamble on Disclosure

March 17, 2015
Bond Buyer

Chicago took a gamble by voluntarily laying out in stark terms the fiscal threats that could lead to further credit erosion and the impact on its swap and liquidity contracts, market participants said. Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners, called the voluntary disclosure "shrewd and prudent" and "the right thing to do."

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While you were sleeping: European stocks, bonds rally

March 6, 2015
The National Business Review

European stocks climbed, while the euro dropped to the lowest level in more than 11 years, after the European Central Bank said it will start wider asset purchases next week. A report showed initial jobless claims increased to 320,000 in the latest week, up from 313,000 in the prior week, and exceeding the 295,000 forecast. That heightened expectations for Friday's jobs report, which is expected to show payrolls rose by 235,000 last month while the jobless rate declined to 5.6 percent. "We're kind of tapping our foot for tomorrow's non-farm payroll," Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners, in Chicago, told Reuters. "The Federal Reserve made it very clear they're going to raise rates but its going to be data dependent. It's one of the benchmark numbers they're looking at."

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US STOCKS-Wall St little changed after 2-day drop, data

March 5, 2015
Reuters

U.S. stocks were little changed on Thursday, after two days of declines on the S&P 500, as economic data did little to alter expectations on the timing of an interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve. Investors were looking ahead to the jobs report due out on Friday to help them assess the timing of the Fed's first interest rate hike in years, said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners, in Chicago.

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Banking vet leads firm’s Richmond debut

February 17, 2015
Richmond Biz Sense

A veteran of the local investment banking scene has been tapped to lead a Chicago financial firm’s first push into Richmond. Gary Penrose recently left downtown-based Davenport & Co. to join Performance Trust Capital Partners, a firm that’s recently been trying to expand its investment banking practice around the country. “They help community banks improve their profitability,” Penrose said. “All of my clients, even the best-performing banks that I work with, could use that. The business has changed, and I need to bring something different to the table to help my clients today. It’s a new world.”

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Oil's rough patch shakes bank investors

January 22, 2015
Houston Chronicle

Green Bancorp priced its shares at $15 for its initial public offering in August, when oil still sold for almost $100 a barrel. Since then, the price of crude has shrunk by half, and shares of Green Bancorp are down by nearly a third. Texas banks are feeling the pinch of oil's big swoon, as lower bank stock prices hit existing shareholders, initial public offerings and prospects for merger and acquisition activity. Low oil prices also could affect acquisitions, said Dan Bass, managing director of investment banking for bank advisory firm Performance Trust Capital Partners. He thinks activity will slow down during the first half of the year. The second half depends on oil prices.

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Examining Chicago’s Economic Recovery

January 22, 2015
Chicago Tonight WTTW

In a panel discussion with Chicago Tonight WTTW, Brian Battle comments on Chicago's economic recovery. A Brookings Institution report ranks Chicago 203rd out of 300 metropolitan areas around the world in bouncing back from recession. Just how concerned should we be?

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Merchants & Farmers Bancshares, Inc. to acquire Vernon Bancshares, Inc.

January 19, 2015
Leesville Daily Leader

Merchants & Farmers Bancshares, Inc. (“M&F Bancshares”), holding company for Merchants & Farmers Bank and Trust Company, (“M&F Bank”) announced Thursday, Jan. 15, the signing of a definitive merger agreement, under which M&F Bancshares has agreed to acquire Vernon Bancshares, Inc. (“VBI”). The terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Performance Trust Capital Partners, LLC, with Jonathan W. Briggs as lead investment banker, acted as financial advisor to M&F Bancshares, and Jones Walker LLP, with lead attorneys Ron Snider and Rob Carothers, acted as its legal advisors.

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YOUR PRACTICE-Tips for talking munis with clients as rate hike looms

January 16, 2015
Reuters.com

Municipal bonds remain a favorite of financial advisers and tax-conscious clients, even though they could be vulnerable to interest rate hikes later this year. Munis - notes issued by states, cities, and counties to finance infrastructure and other projects - can offer a near-guaranteed return to clients, with slightly higher yields than treasuries, investment advisers say. Advisers must help clients realize that outsized returns are not the point of municipals, or any fixed-income investment. A fixed-income portfolio is supposed to produce reliable income, said Brian Battle, analytics group director at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago.

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Bankers encouraged to avoid regulatory-inspired mediocrity

Winter 2014
Bank Owner

Shareholders and regulators often see eye-to-eye. Both groups want banks to avoid inappropriate risk. Regulators, however, have gone too far with policies for banks managing their securities portfolios, said Bart Smith of Performance Trust Capital Partners, Chicago. Smith spoke at the Bank Holding Company Association's Fall Seminar on Oct. 7.

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Dollars & Sense: Know the basics of bond strategies

December 6, 2014
New Haven Register

When it comes to your fixed income investments, is it better to take the seemingly simple approach of using bond funds, or is it better to take the more customizable approach of selecting individual bonds? “There are arguments to support both approaches, and the bottom line depends upon cost and effectiveness, the value of things like customizing cash flows and maximizing tax deficiencies, and the risk nature of the fixed income exposure desired,” says Brian Battle, director at Performance Trust Analytics Group.

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US STOCKS-S&P 500 ticks up to record on central bank bets

November 24, 2014
Reuters

U.S. stocks rose on Monday on hopes that China will take further accommodative monetary policy action if needed, while merger deals kept traders focused even as volumes were below average. Helping bullish sentiment was expectation central banks will continue to boost equities. Following last week's surprise rate cut, China's leadership and central bank are ready to cut interest rates again and to loosen lending restrictions. "You tend not to cut rates once, it doesn't happen in a vacuum. This could be the first in a series. The question is, how much they are going to have to do before it works," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago.

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United Bancshares acquires Ohio State Bank

November 18, 2014
The Marion Star

United Bancshares Inc., parent company of The Union Bank Co., has completed its acquisition of The Ohio State Bank in a cash transaction worth about $4,290,237, a news release from United Bancshares announces. Performance Trust Capital Partners LLC served as financial adviser to United Bancshares, and Dinsmore & Shohl LLP served as the company’s legal counsel. Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick LLP served as legal counsel to Ohio State Bancshares and Rbancshares.

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Familiar name tops list of big banks in area

November 7, 2014
Houston Chronicle

JPMorgan Chase & Co. remains the banking behemoth of Houston with nearly half the area's market share, according to SNL Financial data released last week by Performance Trust Capital Partners. JPMorgan Chase had 227 branches and $104.2 billion in area deposits, giving it 48.3 per-cent of the Houston metropolitan market. Its local deposits increased 44.8 percent from $71.9 billion in 2013. "They're four times as big as the next competitor," said Dan Bass, managing director of investment banking for bank advisory firm Performance Trust Capital Partners. "It's interesting to see how much they've increased year over year."

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Capital One Bank to lay off 100-plus in Houston

November 3, 2014
Houston Chronicle

Capital One Bank will lay off more than 100 people in Houston early next year when it moves responsibility for managing and processing account activity for its local branches out of state, the bank said Monday. Dan Bass, managing director of investment banking for bank advisory firm Performance Trust Capital Partners, said this type of downsizing tends to happen in back-office jobs as technology makes it easier to consolidate functions.

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Midwest sees 86 M&A deals among banks and thrifts so far in 2014

October 28, 2014
Columbus Business First

The number of banking mergers is picking up nationally and the Midwest is again proving the most-active location, in part because of the sheer number of institutions calling the region home. "We have a lot of banks, with 250 in Ohio in particular," Kate Lynch, director of investment banking for Performance Trust Capital Partners, told me. "It's driven by the number of small institutions or just total number of banks."

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Airline Industry-Related Must-Reads: Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL), JetBlue Airways Corporation (JBLU), United Continental Holdings Inc (UAL), American Airlines Group Inc (AAL)

October 27, 2014
Markets Emerging

Major airline stocks closed higher Friday despite New York officials confirmed the state’s first case of the Ebola virus. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said Dr. Craig Spencer’s diagnosis did not pose a threat to others. “What moves the market is a surprise or something that’s unexpected or unanticipated, so the fact that there’s an Ebola case is old news,” said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago. “For it to be a real story, it has to be way more contagious than we thought.”

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Don't freak out about the Fed

September 15, 2014
CNN Money

Brian Battle, director of trading Performance Trust Capital Partners, said the recent move higher in Treasury yields is more about a return to normalcy than anything else. At 2.6%, yields remain lower than where they started the year. That's a bit of a disconnect since rates often move much higher at a time when the market is expecting the Fed to put on its rate hiking boots soon. In fact, many experts thought bond yields would climb sharply in 2014. The rationale was that bonds were overvalued and investors would dump them in favor of stocks.

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Biggest stock losers hang out at shopping centers

May 20, 2014
MarketWatch.com

Retail stocks have come in for more punishment than the rest. Rightly so, says Brian Battle of Performance Trust.

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US STOCKS-S&P 500 gains after Macy's jumps on strong results

November 13, 2013
Reuters

U.S. stocks rose on Wednesday, with the S&P 500's advance led by Macy's after stronger-than-expected quarterly sales and earnings. Volume was still subdued, with investors looking ahead to Federal Reserve Vice Chair Janet Yellen's appearance on Thursday before the Senate Banking Committee to consider her nomination as Fed chair, replacing Ben Bernanke. "I think Yellen's presentation is the one everyone is anticipating ... This will be our first chance to see her do some Q&A for her theme at the Fed," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital in Chicago.

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REFILE-US STOCKS-Wall St edges up in wake of Fed; Exxon a boost

November 13, 2013
Reuters

Thursday's economic data was mixed. A gauge of business activity in the Midwest execeeded expectations in October, while weekly initial jobless claims dipped in the latest week. The Labor Department's October employment report will be an important source of clues about the economy and future Fed action. Until the figures, due Nov. 8, are released "we're going to drift. We need something to send us higher", said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital.

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Analysis: How to profit from August jobs report

September 6, 2013
USA Today

Inflation isn't here yet, and you'll have a long time to start thinking about it and how it might affect your portfolio. Friday's jobless report said the economy created 169,000 jobs in August, fewer than the 180,000 expected, and the unemployment rate fell to 7.3%, vs. 7.4% the previous month. "The devil's in the details," says Brian Battle, director at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago. "The headline jobless rate declined, but the components are awful. For example, June and July non-farm payrolls were revised sharply downward, betraying far more weakness than the market had anticipated."

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Elwood sues industrial developer over incentives deal

August 25, 2013
Chicago Tribune

CenterPoint Properties likes to provide visitors a bird's-eye view of the $1 billion industrial park it developed that houses a Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway rail-to-truck transfer facility and half a dozen warehouses. Some 3,800 jobs were created. The view from Elwood Village Hall is quite different. Village President Bill Offerman feels CenterPoint reneged on pledges to build a hotel and restaurants and create upward of 12,000 jobs. The project didn't generate any taxes while it was under construction. So when the developer asked for about $88 million in reimbursements, the village issued TIF notes, basically IOU vouchers, to CenterPoint. The notes paid interest of 10 percent compounded twice a year for 20 years. "Ten percent is really high no matter what we are talking about," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Chicago-based Performance Trust Capital Partners, an investment adviser. Battle said 10 percent was about double the rate of debt issued by some of the highest-rated states like Texas or Virginia.

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Tuesday's Bank Stocks: Banks climb ahead of Jackson Hole

August 20, 2013
SNL Financial

U.S. central bankers are meeting in Jackson Hole this week to discuss monetary policy, leaving investors "tapping their feet" as they await the Fed's decision, said Brian Battle, director at Performance Trust Capital Advisors. For now, all investors can do is wait for minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee's July meeting to be released. "It's all on hold now, and we're in a low-volume environment because it's the end of the summer," Battle said. "We're pretty sure the Fed minutes are going to be a nonevent, but you're never sure until it's released." Battle said there are "nascent" indications that the economy is slightly improving, and data released Tuesday seemed to confirm that.

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Allegiance Closer to IPO After Deal to Buy Houston Rival

August 12, 2013
American Banker

Allegiance Bancshares executives long saw Independence Bank as a potential acquisition target, but what finally prompted the two Houston lenders to pair up? "The Independent IPO really brought a lot of focus in that size range, and the sales pitch is that you could be a part of the next Texas bank to go public," says Daniel Bass, a managing director of Performance Trust Capital Partners, one of the advisors to the $220 million-asset Independence Bank. "It really ignited the banks like Allegiance to try and get to $1.5 billion in assets," a rule of thumb for banks that want to get the market's attention.

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Allegiance acquisition to create $1B bank in Houston

August 5, 2013
Houston Business Journal

Allegiance Bancshares Inc. has agreed to acquire the $220 million-asset Independence Bank, executives told the Houston Business Journal on Monday...the deal gives Allegiance a larger asset base from which to launch another major franchise in the city, said Dan Bass, Houston managing director for Performance Capital Trust Partners LLC. “I think they’re going to be a major player in Houston on a long-term basis,” Bass said. “Once you get to $1 billion (in assets), you’re on the radar screen for people trying to get into Houston. Not that they’d sell, … but the bigger you are, then the more you can spread out the cost and drive the efficiency ratio down.”

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Stocks down off record highs in early trading

August 2, 2013
USA Today

BAfter weaker-than-expected job growth in July announced this morning, the stock market is taking a breather and is trading slightly lower in early trading after hitting record highs Thursday. Brian Battle, director at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago, says the weak jobs number "in no way threaten the Feds description of a weak economy." As a result, Battle's take is that Fed tapering is "further off."

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Illinois unemployment at 9.2 percent for July, above national average

August 2, 2013
ABC7Chicago.com

In Illinois, the unemployment rate is 9.2 percent, while nationally the rate stands at 7.4 percent. Why is it so much higher here? Illinois has the second-highest state unemployment rate in the country. Only Nevada's 9.6 rate is higher. Illinois is a state with too many people looking for work and not enough businesses and public agencies with available jobs. Brian Battle is one of the bosses at Performance Trust, a bond trading company in Chicago. He says fewer businesses are coming or growing to Illinois in fear of rising taxes and gridlocked politics.

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Stocks turn higher, S&P 500 hits fresh high; Yahoo slumps 4%

July 22, 2013
CNBC.com

Stocks shook off their earlier losses to turn slightly higher Monday, lifting the S&P 500 to a fresh intraday high, though a batch of mixed earnings reports and weaker-than-expected existing home sales kept a damper on gains. "The Fed is done talking until next week and we're going to be subject to earnings reports and talk from Congress this week," said Brian Battle, vice president of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners. "We could be in a holding pattern if the market can resist a selloff, but to propel higher, we need better fundamentals…we're still running on Fed liquidity and the pullback caused by the tapering talk has been reversed in the last two weeks."

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Global stocks near five-year high, yen gains on Japan elections

July 22, 2013
Reuters

The Standard & Poor's 500 stock index hit a record closing high for a third straight session. Data showing a surprise drop in U.S. existing-home sales in June also tempered the initial buying of equities and other risky assets. "I think we're stuck in a range and we're very much at the top of this range," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago.

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Chicago's bond rating takes a big hit

July 19, 2013
Chicago Tribune

Chicago's bond rating has taken a big hit, suffering the first downgrade in the two-year tenure of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who was warned by financial analysts of the need to take drastic — even politically daring — actions to get his city's fiscal house in order. "There's no way to sugarcoat this," said Brian Battle, director at Chicago-based Performance Trust Capital Partners, an investment adviser specializing in fixed-income products. "This is bad for Chicago."

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Stocks touch intraday records on Bernanke comments

July 18, 2013
MarketWatch.com

Stocks have resumed their advance, sending the Dow and S&P 500 to new intraday highs. Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners, says "talk of tapering is getting further and further away."

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Prosperity's Zalman Bends His Own Rules in Pricey Deal

July 3, 2013
American Banker

David Zalman dislikes bidding for banks — but he hates losing out on a target he really wants. The chief executive of Prosperity Bancshares (PB) in Houston gave in just a little to snag the oldest independent bank in Texas, FVNB in Victoria, for $380 million in cash and stock this week. The rising stock price is further proof that the market is more interested in price to earnings, says Dan Bass, a managing director at Performance Trust Capital Partners. The deal is priced at 17.7 times FVNB's earnings; Prosperity trades at 16.5 times its earnings. When adjusted for an expected 25% cost savings, the multiple is closer to 11.7, Bass says.

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U.S. Stocks - Wall St extends gains ahead of Friday's payrolls data

July 2, 2013
Reuters

U.S. stocks rose for a second day on Tuesday, helped by strong June car sales, while concerns receded about the Federal Reserve's plans to pare its massive bond-buying program. "We're finally getting a breath of fresh air, some relief, after two weeks of taper drama," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago. "I think a lot of leverage is out of the Street, a lot of speculation is out of the market, and I think it's going to be quiet until we get to the unemployment number on Friday."

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Prosperity Bancshares stays in a buying mood

July 1, 2013
Houston Chronicle

Houston's Prosperity Bancshares has been on a merger tear in the past 18 months, announcing seven deals including one on Monday. But the latest - an agreement worth nearly $380 million to buy First Victoria National Bank - has been brewing for years. Dan Bass, managing director of investment banking with Performance Trust, called Prosperity one of the "darlings" of the banking industry right now because of its ability to negotiate deals at a good price and successfully integrate companies. "They are a machine. They are striking while the iron is hot and doing a number of transactions," Bass said of Prosperity. "This is not the biggest deal they have done, but it is a sizable deal. They are starting to see bigger deals now and those move the needle more. They are getting larger quickly."

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Illinois pays the price for ignoring pension crisis

June 25, 2013
The Associated Press

Largely because of its unfunded retirement plans, Illinois has replaced longtime bottom-dweller California as having the lowest credit rating of any state. So when Illinois tries to borrow money, it faces the same problem as the spendthrift cousin: far higher interest rates. "There are investors who won't buy Illinois or bonds with Illinois labels at any price. They just see it as toxic," said Brian Battle, director at Performance Trust Capital Partners, a Chicago-based investment firm. That means the state pays "the biggest penalty by a long, long shot."

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Stocks End Down 1%, Dow Drops 100 in Choppy Session; All S&P Sectors Lower

June 11, 2013
CNBC.com

Stocks finished sharply lower in volatile trading Tuesday after briefly wiping out most of their losses, with all key S&P sectors closing in the red, as the Bank of Japan's latest monetary policy decision disappointed investors. "Everything's driven by interest rates—there's been a lot of back and forth today as a result," said Brian Battle, vice president of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners.

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Illinois Dinged by Downgrades

June 11, 2013
Wall Street Journal

Legislators in Illinois again failed to pass pension overhaul recently. Last week, both Fitch Ratings and Moody’s Investors Service cut the state’s rating on its general-obligation bonds down a notch because of the state’s inaction. “The Illinois label is radioactive for some investors,” said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago.

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Brian Battle: Fed painted into a corner?

May 22, 2013
MarketWatch.com

As Fed chief Ben Bernanke testifies on Capitol Hill, Brian Battle of Performance Trust Capital Partners joins Jim Asendio for MarketWatch Stock Talk.

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Stocks close flat, S&P 500 briefly hits fresh all-time high; materials lag

May 13, 2013
CNBC

Stocks finished flat in lackluster trading Monday after the S&P 500 briefly touched a new all-time high. "This week, we'll be subject to global headlines more than the economic headlines," said Brian Battle, director and vice president of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners. "This is more of a pause in the market than a selloff."

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Stocks close flat; S&P briefly hits record high

May 13, 2013
NBCNews.com

Stocks finished flat in lackluster trading Monday after the S&P 500 briefly touched a new all-time high. "This week, we'll be subject to global headlines more than the economic headlines," said Brian Battle, director and vice president of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners. "This is more of a pause in the market than a sell-off."

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Good Match Outweighs Distance in Texas-Iowa Deal

April 25, 2013
American Banker

Triumph Bancorp, a specialty lender in Dallas, announced Wednesday it would acquire National Bancshares, a community banking company in Bettendorf, Iowa. The pairing seems odd on the surface, but each recognized the other has something it needs. The deal highlights how in the current M&A market, there is something for everybody — so long as buyers and sellers come with an open mind. "This goes to show you that opportunistic buys are out there if you're willing to look," says Daniel Bass, managing director at Performance Trust Capital Partners. "This deal makes a lot of sense from both sides."

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Southwest National Bank to buy loans, sell deposits of Nevada sister bank

April 18, 2013
Houston Business Journal

In a bid to refocus its efforts on Texas, the parent company of Houston-based Southwestern National Bank will sell the deposits and branches of a Nevada-based sister bank, CEO Gary Owens told me Thursday. After the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, sister banks residing in different states have been able to shed separate state charters and operate using a single charter, a cost-saving move that cuts administrative expenses, said Dan Bass, Houston managing partner for Performance Trust Capital Partners.

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Thankful for $10 Million Wasted Each Year: Only in Illinois

April 4, 2013
RebootIllinois.com

Great news, Illinois taxpayers! You’ll only be paying an extra $10 million a year for the foreseeable future, thanks to historically low interest rates on bonds like those sold Tuesday to pay for $800 million in road and infrastructure projects. That’s what happens when you have the worst credit rating in the nation, a dubious honor Illinois now holds. As most semi-conscious taxpayers in Illinois know, we earned our rock-bottom credit rating by failing to do anything about our ever-increasing debt to our five statewide public pension systems, which now consume close to one-fourth of our revenue. “They are paying a penalty, but we’re really, really lucky that rates are at all-time historic lows because the penalty doesn’t hurt all that much,” said Brian Battle, director of trading for Performance Trust Capital Partners.

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Independent Bank Group looking for Houston acquisitions

April 3, 2013
Houston Business Journal

A McKinney-based bank is scouting out the Houston market for potential acquisitions. It’s also in the midst of going public, which industry observers say will give it more muscle to scoop up banks. In regulator filings, Independent Bank Group Inc. said it plans to explore the Houston and San Antonio markets for bank deals, believing there are opportunities to buy small banks throughout the state “either because of scale and operational challenges, regulatory pressure, management succession issues or shareholder liquidity needs.” “They’ve been looking around (for Houston bank deals) for a while, but now they (will) have public currency, which should make them a more attractive buyer,” said Dan Bass, Houston managing director at Chicago-based fixed-income services firm Performance Trust Capital Partners LLC.

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Healthcare leads Wall Street higher, S&P record in view

April 2, 2013
The Economic Times

US stocks rose on Tuesday, putting the S&P 500 within striking distance of its all-time intraday high as healthcare stocks surged on prospects of a boost to earnings. The broader market's rise countered Monday's sell-off. Most investors expect moves to be limited this week before Friday's US monthly payrolls report. "We'll just be marking time until then, as people are squaring their positions," said Brian Battle, director of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners in Chicago.

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Illinois bond sale includes pension penalty

April 2, 2013
The State Journal Register

Illinois sold $800 million worth of bonds Tuesday, two months after postponing a sale in the wake of a state credit downgrade. Brian Battle, director of trading for Performance Trust Capital Partners, said the state was “very fortunate” to be selling the bonds at this time. “They are paying a penalty, but we’re really, really lucky that rates are at all-time historic lows because the penalty doesn’t hurt all that much,” he said.

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'Unknowable' Cyprus outcome worries Wall Street

March 21, 2013
MarketWatch.com

The crisis in Cyprus is finally getting the attention it's due, says Brian Battle of Performance Trust Capital Partners, because of the unprecedented nature of the bailout terms, and because investors don't want to be left exposed before an "unknowable weekend in Europe."

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Stocks retreat: Dow halts 10-day winning streak, but ends positive for 4th straight week

March 15, 2013
CNBC.com

Stocks finished in negative territory Friday, with the Dow snapping a 10-day win streak and the S&P 500 ending shy of its record closing level, following a disappointing consumer sentiment report and as investors started to question whether the recent rally has run out of steam. "We're near the all-time high and you'd have to start betting on a mean reversion," said Brian Battle, vice president of trading at Performance Trust Capital Partners.

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