Piper Jaffray is in the market for an asset management firm, the firm's CEO, Andrew Duff, has recently indicated, Minneapolis St. Paul Business Journal reports. The move is rather surprising, given the fact Piper divested its asset management arm in 1998 when it split off from U.S. Bancorp by merging it into the bank's First American Asset Management division.

What's prompting the company's renewed interest in making such an acquisition, Duff said, is the $510 million Piper Jaffray stands to earn, after tax, from the sale of its brokerage unit to UBS in the third quarter. The company will also use part of the proceeds to expand its investment banking unit, Duff said.

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