* U.S.-based Advent International Corp. has sealed a deal to buy 51% of Argentine card and payment company Prisma Medios de Pago SA for some $725 million, Clarín reported, citing sources directly linked to the negotiations. Antitrust authorities set Jan. 23, 2019, as the deadline for the sale of at least 51% of Prisma's share capital. The report said a formal announcement of the agreement would be made in the coming days.
* Brazil's Banco BMG SA is considering whether to postpone an initial public offering scheduled to price on Dec. 17, Valor Econômico reported. It said shareholders were due to decide on that day whether to go ahead with the operation, adding that the family that controls the bank and coordinating entities had found lower-than-expected demand.
MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA
* Grupo Financiero Scotiabank Inverlat SA de CV is allocating an additional investment of $109.6 million in Mexico, El Financiero reported, citing CEO Enrique Zorrilla. "The conditions can turn out to be challenging, but we are committed to working during sunny days and rainy days, committed to take every opportunity to support the economic growth of the country," the executive told journalists.
* Mexico's Finance Minister Carlos Urzua presented the new government's budget for 2019 to the congress, pegged at 5.8 trillion pesos, the Financial Times reported. The figure is 6.1% higher in real terms than the approved budget for this year.
* Investors in Mexican banks should not ditch their holdings due to political uncertainty in the country and the possibility of lower profits if the new government acts to eliminate some fees, Bloomberg News reported, citing Jason Mollin, an analyst at Bank of Nova Scotia. He said the country's banks were still far more solid than elsewhere in the region.
* BR Insurance Corretora de Seguros SA, recently renamed as Alper, completed its 100% acquisition of life insurance broker Capilano Corretora de Seguros de Vida Ltda. Capilano manages a portfolio of 18,000 beneficiaries and is expected to commercialize about 24 million reais in premiums during 2018.
* BTG Pactual Asset Management has closed its acquisition of Lutece Re, a Bermuda-based boutique fund manager that specializes in reinsurance risk, multiple news outlets reported. BTG Pactual Asset Management is part of BTG Pactual Group.
* Banco Bradesco SA's executives expect Brazil's corporate loans to grow at about 10% in 2019 after bottoming out in the past years, Valor Econômico reported. According to Bradesco President Octavio de Lazari, the bank's flagship individual loans, such as payroll and real estate financing, will benefit from the country's economic recovery. Lazari also said the bank has finalized the downsizing of its branch network, but noting that its employee count should remain stable, Folha De S.Paulo reported.
* Banco Bradesco SA estimates that Brazil could attract $50 billion in resources from emerging market funds in 2019 if the incoming government advances with reforms, Diário Comércio Indústria & Serviços reported, citing Executive Vice President Marcelo Noronha. He said global funds, which do not invest exclusively in emerging markets, could pump a further $50 billion into the local financial system.
* Banco Bradesco SA CEO Octávio de Lazari has ruled out the delisting of card processor Cielo SA from the stock market, Reuters reported. Cielo has suffered from the fast growth in competitors in the sector, but Lazari told reporters Dec. 14 that it remained a good investment.
* Brazilian insurance company Pan Seguros SA is changing its name and corporate branding to Too Seguros, Valor Econômico reported.
* Peruvian Agriculture Minister Gustavo Mostajo said the government had rejected a proposal to merge Banco Agropecuario with a newly created company called MiAgro and would instead back a parliamentary bill to relaunch the troubled state-run development bank, Gestión reported. He said the aim of the latest proposal was to strengthen the entity and sharpen its focus on granting credits to small and medium-sized farms.
* Colombian microfinance bank Banco de las Microfinanzas - Bancamía SA has launched a financing program scheme aimed at easing credit management among farmers by linking payments to agricultural cycles, La República reported, citing the bank's CEO Miguel Angel Charria.
* Banco de Inversión y Comercio Exterior SA said General Manager Fernando Latorre left his position. José Luis Morea, who would resign as director, will take over Latorre's post. Rafael Robles will also resign as director as of Dec. 31, BICE said.
* Argentine nonbank financial entities posted losses in recent months for the first time since 2010 as a sharp slowdown in credit demand from consumers batters their business, El Cronista reported, citing central bank data. The monetary authority said the 15 finance companies included in its data posted losses of 38 million pesos in October and 37 million pesos in September.
* José Ignacio Zamorano, president of investment banking at BTG Pactual Chile SpA, told La Tercera in an interview that the company's business prospects in Chile are good, but there is limited scope for further consolidation in most industrial sectors. He said the investment bank had registered $12 billion in transactions in 2018, up 50% from the previous year.
* Chile's government has announced new regulations that will make it easier for affiliates of private pension funds to move to different pension fund administrators, La Tercera reported. Under the new rules, they will not have to undertake a prior enrollment or need a security PIN.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
* Asia-Pacific: China to share investor identities with Hong Kong; Sri Lanka reinstates PM
* Middle East & Africa: Access Bank said to acquire Diamond Bank; Moza Banco agrees to buy Banco Terra
* Europe: TP Icap sues NEX; BAWAG to buy BFL Leasing; Novo Banco sells NPLs
Helen Popper contributed to this article.
The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 8:00 a.m. São Paulo time, and scans news sources published in English, Portuguese and Spanish. Some external links may require a subscription. Links are current as of publication time, and we are not responsible if those links are unavailable later.