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SNB says UBS can repurchase StabFund within three months

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

ZURICH (Reuters) - The Swiss National Bank (SNB) said on Friday the stabilization fund it set up five years ago to bail out Swiss bank UBS <UBSN.VX> had repaid the loan granted by the SNB, allowing UBS to go ahead with its plan to repurchase the once-toxic assets.

UBS may now exercise an option to repurchase the StabFund from the SNB. The price will be determined based on the value of the assets in the portfolio that will be valued by independent agents, the Swiss central bank said in a statement.

In autumn 2008, the Swiss government, the Swiss financial markets watchdog and the SNB adopted measures to rescue UBS, the country's biggest bank, including the acquisition of $38.7 billion in illiquid assets by the SNB which have since turned profitable.

The asset valuation and completion of the purchase option transaction are expected to take approximately three months.

In July UBS said it would repay the loan and buy back equity in the fund, adding that the move was expected to bolster its capital.

UBS will have to pay the SNB $1 billion plus half of the fund's net asset value in excess of this amount. The fund's equity amounted to $5.5 billion at the end of 2012.

(Reporting by Silke Koltrowitz; Editing by David Cowell)

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/130816/snb-says-ubs-can-repurchase-stabfund-within-three-months