Capital One Financial Corp.'s agreement to buy ING Direct USA is on track to close this quarter even though the Federal Reserve Board delayed consideration Wednesday, Chairman and Chief Executive Richard Fairbank said.
The Fed board was slated to discuss, and possibly vote on, the $9 billion deal Wednesday but postponed the meeting until Monday because of a "scheduling conflict" at the central bank, Fairbank said during a presentation at a banking conference in Miami sponsored by Credit Suisse.
"We didn't change the schedule" for when the deal is expected to close, Fairbank said. "This is a matter of apparently just a few days, so it doesn't have any impact [on the closing]. We have a lot of days left still in the quarter."
The deal was announced in June.
The Fed did not give a reason for delaying the meeting Wednesday.
Fairbank devoted much of his presentation to touting the benefits of the transaction, one of the first major bank deals to be scrutinized under new regulatory standards that weigh mergers' broader impact on the economy.
Buying ING Group NV's online U.S. bank will be one of the $206 billion-asset Capital One "most strategically important" deals, Fairbank said. It will make it a nationwide bank "without having to pay all of the costs associated" with a "big expensive" branch rollout. ING Direct boasts a "very, very loyal customer franchise" and that "banking is going to a digital destination," he said.
The deal is slated to close by the end of the first quarter, he said. Capital One $2.6 billion agreement to buy HSBC Holdings Plc's U.S. credit card operations should close in the second quarter, he said.