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Morgan Stanley: Financial Winner

Reuters reported on Friday that Morgan Stanley named Bob Eatroff and Jim Head jointly to lead the company's mergers and acquisitions business in the Americas, while Colm Donlon and Johannes Groeller were named co-heads for M&A in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

The company also promoted Susie Huang and Michele Colocci as vice chairmen of investment banking, according to internal memos reviewed by Reuters.

Morgan Stanley's shares have now returned 21% year-to-date, following a 44% decline during 2011.

The shares trade for 0.7 times their reported Sept. 30 tangible book value of $26.65, and for nine times the consensus 2013 EPS estimate of $1.99, among analysts polled by Thomson Reuters. The consensus 2014 EPS estimate is $2.32.

Morgan Stanley pays a quarterly dividend of a nickel a share.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Michael Carrier has a neutral rating on Morgan Stanley, with a $20 price target, and on Nov. 25 said that following the next round of Federal Reserve stress tests in March, there could be "upside potential" for Morgan Stanley to pay out a higher percentage of earnings.

Carrier also said that the possible regulatory approval for the company to complete its purchase of Citigroup's entire remaining stake in the Morgan Stanley Smith Barney joint venture could "mostly replace" common share buybacks.

MS ChartMS data by YCharts

Interested in more on Morgan Stanley? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock.

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-- Written by Philip van Doorn in Jupiter, Fla.

>Contact by Email.

Philip W. van Doorn is a member of TheStreet's banking and finance team, commenting on industry and regulatory trends. He previously served as the senior analyst for TheStreet.com Ratings, responsible for assigning financial strength ratings to banks and savings and loan institutions. Mr. van Doorn previously served as a loan operations officer at Riverside National Bank in Fort Pierce, Fla., and as a credit analyst at the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, where he monitored banks in New York, New Jersey and Puerto Rico. Mr. van Doorn has additional experience in the mutual fund and computer software industries. He holds a bachelor of science in business administration from Long Island University.
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