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National Financial Partners weighs selling itself

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NEW YORK (AP) — Shares of National Financial Partners Corp. jumped Wednesday after the company, which provides wealth management services, said it is considering selling itself.

The New York firm is led by Jessica Bibliowicz, the daughter of former Citigroup CEO Sandy Weill.

NFP’s board has formed a committee to consider a possible sale after receiving “indications of interest” from unidentified private equity firms. The committee is made up of independent directors, not executives of the company.

NFP said that it could not predict whether it would reach a deal.

The company’s profit dropped 19 percent last year to $30 million, while revenue grew 5 percent to $1.1 billion. Its shares rose about 27 percent in 2012.

On Wednesday, the stock jumped $3.02, or 15 percent, to $23.07 in morning trading. Shares peaked at $23.39, their highest point since September 2008, the month Lehman Brothers collapsed and set off a financial crisis.

Bibliowicz has been NFP’s CEO since 1999 and chairman since 2003. The company has said she plans to step down as chief executive at the end of March and become NFP’s nonexecutive chairman.

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