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US investor sues Danske Bank; Deutsche Bank shares take another beating


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US investor sues Danske Bank; Deutsche Bank shares take another beating

* The European Banking Authority said it found that crypto-assets typically fall outside EU regulation of financial services and that consumers could be put at risk, adding that it urged the European Commission to look into whether new rules for such assets could be drawn up. The European Securities and Markets Authority echoed the EBA's statement, saying any gaps and issues in EU rules should be addressed at the European level.


* The U.K. government will be required to present revised Brexit plans within three days if British Prime Minister Theresa May's withdrawal deal is rejected next week, following a vote by the House of Commons, the BBC reported.

* British asset manager Man Group PLC and its subsidiaries are facing a $156 million lawsuit from Kuwait's Public Institution for Social Security over allegations of secret contracts between the group and a former executive of the pension fund, Reuters reported. Man Group said it "will dispute any claim and intends to vigorously and robustly defend any proceedings."

* Standard Life Aberdeen PLC's asset management business Aberdeen Standard Investments will acquire a 50% stake in Virgin Money Holdings (UK) PLC unit Virgin Money Unit Trust Managers Ltd. for £40 million, Alliance News reported. The deal is expected to close in the second quarter, subject to regulatory approval.

* U.K.-based payment services provider TransferWise Ltd. is applying for a money transfer license in Brussels to avoid disruption to its business in the event of a no-deal Brexit, Reuters reported. TransferWise said it will open an office in the city, but will continue to expand its London base.

* Bank of Georgia Group PLC named Archil Gachechiladze CEO of the group and of unit JSC Bank of Georgia replacing Kaha Kiknavelidze.

* U.K.-based Tasker Insurance Group Ltd. named Jonathan Webber CFO, Insurance Business UK reported.


* Deutsche Bank AG's shares on Frankfurt's Xetra exchange closed down 2.77% yesterday, after Bloomberg News reported that German prosecutors found a list of 900 clients involved in the Panama Papers tax evasion case during their November 2018 raid on the bank.

* Meanwhile, German financial watchdog Bafin is requiring Deutsche Bank to re-examine the files of some 20,000 risky clients by June-end as part of its "know your customer" process, an insider told Reuters. The lender has come under fire for procedural weaknesses in identifying clients to prevent money laundering and the financing of extremists. Handelsblatt first reported the news.

* Hamburg bank M.M.Warburg & CO (AG & Co.) KGaA has filed a lawsuit against Deutsche Bank in Frankfurt alleging that the lender failed for years to withhold taxes and pay them to the designated tax offices in large share transactions as legally required, Süddeutsche Zeitung reported. As Germany's biggest tax scandal continues to unfold, Warburg itself is facing accusations by prosecutors of tax fraud resulting from illicit dividend stripping trades and of improperly receiving €146 million back in taxes.

* German mobile bank N26 Bank GmbH has announced a $300 million Series D funding round led by New York-based venture capital and private equity firm ​Insight Venture Partners, ​valuing N26 at $2.7 billion. The round also includes participation from ​GIC, ​Singapore's sovereign wealth fund​,​ and several existing investors. It represents the largest private equity financing round for a financial technology company in Europe in recent years.

* Swiss private equity company Partners Group Holding AG is bringing in former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown to advise on so-called impact investments, The Wall Street Journal reported.

* UBS Group AG has required former investment bank head Andrea Orcel to wait until April before moving into his new role as CEO of Spain's Banco Santander SA, after the Swiss lender enforced Orcel's entire six-month garden leave, insiders told Bloomberg News. Orcel was reportedly expected to join Santander in the early part of the first quarter.

* A former UBS Group employee who failed to appear for a second day for a Swiss criminal trial over allegations of stealing client data and selling it to German tax officials is facing four years in jail, Bloomberg News reported.


* The Confédération Nationale du Crédit Mutuel said it is ending discussions with Crédit Mutuel Arkéa SACC over the latter's plans to split from the banking group. Arkéa had not provided any proposals for the split and had not responded to a set of measures previously put forward by the Confédération, according to a spokeswoman for the group.

* Nederlandse Waterschapsbank NV has acquired a €2 billion loan portfolio from ABN Amro Group NV, Het Financieele Dagblad reported. An ABN Amro spokesman said the portfolio was not part of the bank's core business.

* French lender Crédit Agricole SA is closing its Swiss trading arm, Finews reported.

* ING Direct France has changed its name as result of a harmonization effort initiated by ING Groep NV for all its subsidiaries, L'Agefi reported.

* LeasePlan Corp. NV CEO Tex Gunning told BNR Nieuwsradio that he was not expecting an IPO in "the coming one or two years," Het Financieele Dagblad said.

* Jeroen Piqueur, the former founder and CEO of the collapsed Optima Bank, has been declared bankrupt by a court in Ghent, De Tijd reported.


* Rodrigo Rato, the former chairman of Bankia SA, has said in the second session of a trial over the bank's IPO in July 2011 that the operation was the only viable option at the time to not go beyond the "red line" of economic risk set by the bank's own directors, Europa Press reported.

* Banco Santander SA has launched a new debt fund worth €620 million to finance the growth of companies, Europa Press wrote.

* Portugal's ABM banking industry association criticized a bill passed by parliament's budget and finance committee on Jan. 9 that would allow for the naming of large-scale debtors, saying the legislation violates European law and would harm both lenders and their customers, Lusa reported. The parliamentary committee also approved a measure that would oblige banks to inform tax authorities of all accounts with balances above €50,000, Jornal Económico said.

* Portugal's Fidelidade - Companhia de Seguros SA has completed its takeover of Peruvian insurer La Positiva after buying a 51% stake in company for some €90 million, Jornal de Negócios and Jornal Económico reported. The company said the deal marked Fidelidade's debut in Latin America and was "another step in consolidating Fidelidade's internationalization strategy."


* Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini said the government would consider taking control of Banca Carige SpA, Bloomberg News reported. One of Carige's administrators, Pietro Modiano, said however that a nationalization of the lender was theoretical and extreme. Carige, meanwhile, aims to sell €1.5 billion of nonperforming exposure, MF reported.

* The Italian Competition Authority has fined FCA Bank SpA, a joint venture between CA Consumer Finance SA and FCA Italy SpA, €178.9 million for allegedly violating competition rules.

* The Italian government backs the nomination of Marcello Minenna as the new head of market watchdog Consob with the designation possibly approved at a cabinet meeting today or tomorrow, Il Sole 24 Ore reported.


* A U.S. shareholder of Danske Bank A/S sued the Danish lender and four of its former top executives, including former CEO Thomas Borgen and former Chairman Ole Andersen, for allegedly defrauding investors and inflating its share price through concealing money laundering at the lender's Estonian branch, Reuters reported.

* The Danish Prosecutor's Office has presented a formal request to Russian authorities asking them to assume responsibility for a criminal case involving more than 321 million kroner in suspected illegal funds that passed through a company account held at Nordea Bank Abp in Copenhagen, Børsen wrote.

* Danish Business Minister Rasmus Jarlov has indicated that the government might intervene to protect the national status of Dankort, the country's most popular debit payment card, if the company's future financial stability comes under threat, Politiken reported.


* Otkritie Financial Corp. Bank closed a deal to acquire a 100% stake in Baltic Leasing OJSC, the Russian lender said yesterday without providing details of the transaction. Otkritie also completed its merger with B&N Bank.

* VTB Bank PJSC became the owner of an 81.11% stake in PJSC Sarovbusinessbank, Vedomosti reported.

* New rules regarding the calculation of prices for the compulsory third-party motor insurance entered into force in Russia, news agency Prime reported. The new rules expand the tariff corridor used to calculate compulsory third-party motor insurance premiums by 20% up and down from the base price set by the Russian central bank. They also modify some of the parameters that affect the final price of compulsory third-party motor insurance policies, including bonuses awarded for accident-free driving.

* The Polish central bank left its main interest rate unchanged at 1.5%, and the central bank's head, Adam Glapiński, suggested that the rate would not go up during the current term of the Monetary Policy Council, which ends in 2022, Rzeczpospolita reported.


Asia-Pacific: CITIC Securities in M&A deal; China to launch medium-term lending facility

Middle East & Africa: Abraaj gets stake in C&I; Al Baraka eyes Asia; Zenith Bank's retail push

Latin America: Banco do Brasil may IPO asset management arm; Itaú Corpbanca fine reduced

North America: Blackstone-backed auto lender going public; Citi plans majority-owned Chinese JV

Global Insurance: MetLife's new CEO; sidecars renewed after ILS slump; new state health plans


European banks worry higher funding costs may thwart new debt issuance in 2019: European banks see rising funding costs as a key barrier to their debt issuance in 2019 as most of them plan to expand bail-in-able debt buffers to comply with new regulations, a recent survey of the European Banking Authority shows.

Transparency, liquidity to be in focus in future European banking wind-downs: Although Spain's Banco Popular has been hailed as a textbook example of banking resolution, future cases will need to address transparency and liquidity, and the system could be challenged by larger and more complex cases.

Sheryl Obejera, Ed Meza, Danielle Rossingh, Gerard O'Dwyer, Beata Fojcik, Yael Schrage, Stephanie Salti, Sophie Davies and Helen Popper contributed to this report.

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