MetLife Buys Citigroup's Travelers Unit

Updated from 8:08 a.m. EST

MetLife ( MET ) agreed to aqcquire Citigroup's ( C ) Travelers Life & Annuity unit for $11.5 billion.

The sale by Citigroup, for which it will receive both cash and stock, is the latest in a series of moves to sell off core assets. The company spun off and later sold its Travelers Property & Casualty last year.

The combination will make MetLife the largest individual life insurer in North America,based on sales, according to the company.

The 1998 merger of Citigroup and Travelers placed longtime Wall Street dealmaker Sandy Weill in the driver's seat at the world's biggest financial services company. It also sounded the death knell for the Depression Era Glass Steagal act, which separated investment and commercial banks.

MetLife fell 71 cents, or 1.7%, to $39.94, while Citigroup was down 18 cents, or 0.4%, to $48.38 in premarket trading.

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