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MetLife Asset Manager to Push Into Structured Finance, Junk

  • Insurer has `fairly aggressive' hiring plans for asset manager
  • Investment chief Goulart says he's open to acquisitions
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MetLife Inc., the largest U.S. life insurer, plans to expand its third-party asset manager into structured finance and junk bonds, pushing beyond its original focus on real estate and private placement debt.

MetLife Investment Management, or MIM, is planning to bring the new strategies to the market this quarter and could establish an emerging-markets offering in the future, Chief Investment Officer Steven Goulart said in an interview Tuesday at his office in Morristown, New Jersey. Growth is sparking more hiring, with a goal to add more than two dozen staff members for the unit, which serves sovereign wealth funds, pensions and other insurers.