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Edging Closer

Biz BriefsSovereign Bank’s plan to sell a chunk of its stock to Santander Central Hispano moved a step closer to completion last week. The two banks changed some of the terms of their deal after Sovereign shareholders, including New Jersey’s state pension funds, voiced objections.

The changes included dropping Santander’s veto power over any attempt to fire Sovereign CEO Jay Sidhu, and the elimination of Santander’s obligation to vote its Sovereign shares in favor of the Philadelphia bank’s board nominees. With those changes in place, the New York Stock Exchange ruled that a shareholder vote isn’t required to complete the $2.4 billion deal that will give Santander a 19.8% state in Sovereign. Some shareholders said they may appeal the NYSE’s ruling to the SEC.

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