First Republic last week acquired a 19.9% stake in one of the nation's oldest independent investment advisory firms and has an option to buy the rest of it.

The $2.2 billion-asset bank, which specializes in real estate lending and private banking, took its stake in Trainer, Wortham & Co., a New York- based investment firm.

Trainer, Wortham, which was founded in 1924, manages more than $2 billion for affluent individuals and institutional investors, including foundation and endowment clients.

James H. Herbert 2d, First Republic's president and chief executive officer, said the affiliation lets the bank offer investment advisory services to its existing clients.

Charlie Moore, president of Trainer, Wortham, said his firm can gain clients through First Republic.

- Compiled by Olaf de Senerpont Domis, Sara Nathan, and Joanna Sullivan

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