JP Morgan Chase has announced plans to purchase a stake in the business energy trading arm of the Royal Bank of Scotland.
The company has agreed to pay $1.7 billion (£1 billion) for RBS Sempra's assets outside of the United States.
Sources said JP Morgan is continuing discussions with RBS and Sempra about acquiring the North American operations of the commodities and business energy trader.
Royal Bank of Scotland owns 51 per cent of RBS Sempra, a commodities joint venture with Sempra Energy, which owns the remaining 49 per cent.
RBS paid $1.7 billion for the 51 per cent stake in the business in April 2008 and was ordered to sell the holding late last year along with its profitable insurance businesses and some retail branches in exchange for receiving some financial aid from the UK government.
RBS Sempra Commodities is based in Connecticut and trades natural gas, petroleum, metals and other commodities.
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