RBC to focus on U.S. asset management after sale

TORONTO (Reuters) - Royal Bank of Canada <RY.TO> will focus on expanding its U.S. asset management business now that it has sold its money-losing U.S. retail banking operations to PNC Financial Services Group Inc <PNC.N> for $3.45 billion in cash and stock.

"We would be interested in many pieces of wealth management, I think notably, asset management is an area that we have earmarked for growth in the United States," he said.

"It could be an acquisition, but it's just at the least increasing our capabilities from where we are."

Westlake said RBC is looking to build up its asset management presence in mainland Europe and Asia as well.

RBC will still offer banking services to high-net-worth clients though its U.S. broker-dealer, and to Canadians doing business in the United States.

"The fact that it's going to take eight-and-a-half months to close, we may well have other thoughts that come up by then of good places to deploy capital."

(Reporting by John McCrank; Editing by Frank McGurty)