has raised more than $600 million in common equity this quarter the company said Wednesday, shoring up its shaky financial position and possibly setting up a sale.
The company said on Wednesday that it had completed its public common stock offering, initiated last week, which raised $550 million in gross proceeds. Underwriters ended up selling an additional 65 million shares through their over-allotment option.
E*Trade had previously suspended its open market purchase program, commenced on May 8. Through the program, the company had raised $65 million.
Net proceeds, after commissions, from the equity offerings in the second quarter were approximately $586 million, it said.
"We are very pleased with the results of our common equity offerings, which provide funds to bolster E*Trade Bank's capital and also to enhance the liquidity of the parent company," Chairman and CEO Donald Layton said in a statement.
A number of analysts have recently speculated that
E*Trade's efforts to shore up its balance sheet mean a sale of the company is more likely.
have often been identified as possible buyers.
E*Trade has said it does not comment on market speculation and Layton did not address the rumors Wednesday in the statement.
"Completion of these capital raising transactions is the first and most important step in implementing our capital plan," Layton said. "As we continue to work toward the implementation of the unfinished portion of the capital plan, we believe the growth potential of our online brokerage business will continue to strengthen."
E*Trade on Monday launched the debt exchange portion of the capital plan. The company plans to exchange certain senior notes for convertible debt. Analysts say the firm could raise as much as $1.7 billion through the debt conversion, depending on investor participation.
Citadel Investment Group
, E*Trade's largest stock and bondholder, has bought additional common shares in the company, bringing its stake to 17%. It has also agreed to exchange around $800 million of the debt it holds on E*Trade.
This spring, in light of the continuing losses in E*Trade's roughly $23 billion loan portfolio, the Office of Thrift Supervision, its primary banking regulator, told the firm to raise capital quickly.
Sandler O'Neill & Partners
were the joint book runners for the offering.
Shares were recently up a penny to $1.22 on Wednesday.