AXA Dumps Goldman Shares, Pushes Into Money Centers

French insurance AXA is apparently betting on large diversified U.S. banks.
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NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) -- French insurance giant

AXA

is apparently betting on diversified U.S. banks such as

JPMorgan Chase

(JPM) - Get Report

,

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Report

,

Wells Fargo

(WFC) - Get Report

and

Citigroup

(C) - Get Report

as opposed to. U.S. investment banks, including

Goldman Sachs

(GS) - Get Report

.

AXA reduced its stake in Goldman Sachs by more than half during the June-ending quarter, bringing its total holdings in the investment firm to 2.05% from 5%. Axa cut its stake by 16.4 million shares to a total of 10.5 shares, according to

Securities and Exchange Commission

filings obtained through

Edgar Online

.

The stake amounted to roughly $1.47 billion based on Friday's closing price, down from $2.29 billion.

Axa was Goldman's largest single shareholder, according to the

Financial Times

.

Other institutional holders that also reduced their stakes in Goldman during the June-ending quarter included T. Rowe Price,

Barclays

(BCS) - Get Report

and Janus Capital Group among others.

AXA also cut its exposure to

Morgan Stanley

(MS) - Get Report

and several regional banks including

BB&T

(BBT) - Get Report

, preferring instead to invest in large U.S. money-center banks.

Goldman Sachs' stock was rising modestly as the market opened. The stock is down 28% since hitting a 52-week-high of $193.60 on Oct. 14, but up 8% from its year low of $129.50 reached last month.

--Written by Laurie Kulikowski in New York.

To contact the writer of this article, click here:

Laurie Kulikowski

.

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