(Bloomberg News) UBS AG, the largest Swiss bank, hired Peter Forlenza, former head of equities for MF Global Holdings Inc. before its collapse, to head stock trading in the Americas.

Forlenza will be based in New York as head of equities for the Americas and report to Mike Stewart, global head of equities, according to an internal memo obtained by Bloomberg News. Christiaan Brakman, a spokesman for the bank, confirmed Forlenza's hiring.

Stewart, who was hired from Bank of America Corp. in July, was named global head of equities after Francois Gouws and Yassine Bouhara resigned in October following a $2.3 billion loss from unauthorized trading. UBS said last month it will shrink its investment bank to concentrate on wealth management.

MF Global filed the eighth-largest U.S. bankruptcy in October, after disclosures on the extent of wagers on debt from countries including Italy and Spain. MF Global plummeted 67 percent in the weeks before the bankruptcy as Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings reduced its credit ratings to junk.

Carsten Kengeter, chief executive officer of UBS's investment bank, said last month that the firm will exit equity proprietary trading and shrink its equity-linked and synthetic- equity businesses. Kengeter said equities and equity derivatives are still "very attractive" businesses.

Forlenza was Bank of America's global head of equities and founded the macro hedge fund Outpost Investment Group. He began his career in banking at Salomon Brothers in 1988, according to the memo.

Dow Jones Newswires reported the hire earlier.