European Banks Asking Too Much for Assets, Solus’s Pucillo Says

European banks are asking too much for the assets they have to sell to boost capital levels, according to Chris Pucillo, founder of Solus Alternative Asset Management LP.

“Right now, the prices of the assets on the banks’ balance sheets that they’re looking to unload are just not offered at the right levels,” Pucillo, who’s also chief investment officer of the $2.6 billion hedge-fund firm in New York, said today in an interview with Stephanie Ruhle on Bloomberg Television’s “InsideTrack.”

The banks, which need to increase reserves to comply with new regulations, aren’t willing to mark down their assets low enough, Pucillo said.

Other investors have been seeking to take advantage of Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis to snap up securities at deep discounts. David Rubenstein, co-founder of Carlyle Group Inc., said the European sovereign-debt crisis has made the region “the world’s greatest single opportunity” in a Feb. 28 speech at a conference in Berlin.

“We see funds that have been raised for this opportunity and they’re going to be in a highly competitive environment because there’s so many of them,” Pucillo said.

Solus, founded in 2007, is focused on investing in bankruptcy claims and firms emerging from reorganization, where performance isn’t dependent on the overall market, Pucillo said. Last month, the firm hired Scott Martin and C.J. Lanktree, the former co-heads of Deutsche Bank AG’s distressed products group.

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