Strong Financial Corp. may settle with state and federal regulators as early as this week, moving the mutual fund scandal-scarred company one step closer to being purchased by Wells Fargo, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Buying Strong, experts say, is somewhat of a daunting task, considering the once mighty firm was one of the first companies named in New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s probe. As a result, total assets under management have fallen $8 billion to $34 billion, and several portfolio managers have left. Founder Richard Strong has since put the company up for sale and relinquished up all his posts. The company would not comment on the report that a settlement is imminent, but a spokeswoman said that talks with regulators are continuing.

The sale price is expected to be around $500 million, half the amount Strong could have gotten in 1997.

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The staff of Money Management Executive ("MME") has prepared these capsule summaries based on reports published by the news sources to which they are attributed. Those news sources are not associated with MME, and have not prepared, sponsored, endorsed, or approved these summaries.

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