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Press release from Business Wire

Morgan Keegan Hires Rob Larkins to Open California Public Finance Office

<p> San Francisco Office Signals Firm's Public Finance Presence in Western U.S. </p>

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Morgan Keegan Hires Rob Larkins to Open California Public Finance Office15:10 EST Thursday, November 10, 2011 MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Business Wire) -- Morgan Keegan & Company, Inc. announced that Rob Larkins has joined the firm's Investment Banking division as a managing director and head of its new public finance office in San Francisco. “The opening of our California office is further evidence of Morgan Keegan's continued commitment to growing our public finance platform. And Rob is the person we've been looking for to lead this effort in California and the western part of the country,” said Rob Baird, executive managing director and president of Morgan Keegan's Investment Banking division. “Rob is well known in the state and respected as a very talented investment banker. We're confident his extensive knowledge of this market – combined with a high level of experience and expertise – will help us achieve our goal to be a leading underwriter of municipal bonds in this area of the country.” Morgan Keegan anticipates having a fully functional desk within 60-90 days in the San Francisco public finance office, according to Baird. He said Larkins will lead the effort to recruit “a handful of talented, dedicated bankers who share Rob's client focus.” “I joined Morgan Keegan because of its fantastic distribution capabilities and corporate culture that values hard work, professional candor, client service and doing first class business in a first class way,” Larkins said. “Since starting in this business in 1985, I've been fortunate to work with some of the best bankers, attorneys, financial advisors and issuers in the country. Morgan Keegan shares my commitment to work with the industry's best and to provide our clients with customized solutions that meet their unique financing goals.” Larkins comes to Morgan Keegan from Wedbush Securities in San Francisco, where he helped lead an expansion of the firm's municipal business. In 2010, Wedbush was the number one senior manager of California county financings. During this time, Larkins served as lead banker on two significant financings for the Regents of the University of California: a $200 million multi-modal Build America Bonds (BABs) issue and a $50 million Recovery Zone Economic Development Bond (RZEDB) issue. Prior to Wedbush, Larkins spent five years at Lehman Brothers and 15 years at Morgan Stanley where he worked with Don O'Brien and focused primarily on California counties, cities and special districts. Larkins also led the national pension financing and tobacco securitization efforts for those firms. He is a graduate of Stanford University with a bachelor's degree in political science. “During our 15 years together at Morgan Stanley, I found Rob's work ethic, market knowledge and commitment to his clients without equal,” said Don O'Brien, who joined Morgan Keegan in 2008 as a managing director responsible for new business development in the firm's Fixed Income Capital Markets division. “Combining Rob's experience and talent with Morgan Keegan's extensive distribution capabilities will be incredibly effective for issuers. We couldn't be more excited about building our platform in California and throughout the West under Rob's leadership.” Morgan Keegan's Public Finance Investment Banking group consistently ranks among the top ten municipal bond underwriters in the nation. In the third quarter of 2011, the firm was the eighth leading underwriter nationally of negotiated issues, completing 158 transactions with a par amount of $4.6 billion, according to Thomson Reuters. About Morgan Keegan Morgan Keegan & Company, Inc., a full-service brokerage and investment banking firm, is the securities brokerage arm of Regions Financial Corporation (NYSE: RF). Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., Morgan Keegan serves individual and institutional investors in some 300 offices in 20 states. Additional information about Morgan Keegan can be found at www.morgankeegan.com. Morgan Keegan & Company, Inc.Eric Bran, 901-524-4114Corporate Communicationseric.bran@morgankeegan.comorMelinda Rutland, 901-531-3259Investment Banking Marketingmelinda.rutland@morgankeegan.com