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Deutsche cuts London clearing ops; StanChart extends US sanctions scrutiny

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Deutsche cuts London clearing ops; StanChart extends US sanctions scrutiny

UK AND IRELAND

* Standard Chartered PLC has agreed to a further extension of its deferred prosecution agreements in the U.S. to the end of the year. The agreements were first signed in 2012 and were extended in December 2014 and November 2017. The British lender said the agreement acknowledges that the group has made significant progress in enhancing its sanctions compliance program but has not yet reached the standard required under the deals.

* The Bank of England is expected to raise interest rates this week for only the second time since the financial crisis, The Times wrote.

* The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority proposed to toughen up rules for loans offered by crowdfunding platforms to ensure investors receive clear and accurate information about a potential investment and understand the risks involved.

* U.K. Treasury Committee Chair Nicky Morgan wrote to the U.K. FCA to express the committee's doubts as to whether the Financial Ombudsman Service, which resolves disputes between financial firms and their customers, is ready for an increase to its remit.

* Lloyds Banking Group PLC is facing another provision of more than £400 million to cover payment protection insurance costs following the U.K. FCA's deadline for new claims of August 2019, The Times reported. Meanwhile, Lloyds' nonexecutive directors have been asked to reveal when they were made aware of a report by Sally Masterton on the bank's handling of suspected fraud at HBOS PLC's Reading branch.

* Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC appointed Vanessa Bailey and Jeremy Arnold chief risk officers of its ring-fenced bank and NatWest Markets PLC, respectively, effective Sept. 3, Reuters reported.

* Robert Bogucki, a former U.S. head of foreign exchange trading at Barclays PLC, has requested a judge to dismiss criminal charges against him for allegedly defrauding Hewlett-Packard Co. through a method called front-running, according to the Financial Times. Bogucki's lawyers said the case was based on a false premise that Barclays had a fiduciary duty to Hewlett-Packard as its client in the options trade.

* Anne Richards will resign from Prudential PLC's board and as CEO of unit M&G Investment Management Ltd., effective Aug. 10, after Prudential announces its first-half results.

* Aviva PLC will open this week a refund scheme for investors that lost money in the company's preference shares debacle, The Times reported.

* Bank of Ireland Group PLC, the holding company of Bank of Ireland, reported consolidated first-half profit attributable to shareholders of €350 million, compared to a restated €382 million in the same period in 2017. First-half profit before tax was €454 million, down from a restated €460 million a year earlier. The result included a noncore charge of €46 million mainly related to costs associated with the group's restructuring.

* Permanent TSB Group Holdings PLC Chief Risk Officer Stephen Groarke will leave the Irish lender in the coming months. Groarke will also step down as an executive director of the bank's board.

* The Central Bank of Ireland named Mary-Elizabeth McMunn director of credit institutions supervision, responsible for banking supervision and the registry of credit unions.

GERMANY, SWITZERLAND AND AUSTRIA

* Deutsche Bank AG has shifted nearly half its euro clearing activities to Frankfurt from London ahead of Britain's impending departure from the EU, the Financial Times reported. The German lender's global co-head of institutional and treasury coverage, Stefan Hoops, noted that the shift to Frankfurt has not led to the relocation of jobs.

* Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank needs less money from the bond market than it previously planned, and is now planning to issue debt securities of more than €25 billion this year, down from the original target of up to €30 billion, Handelsblatt reported. Of the total, €14 billion has already been raised by June-end.

* While Lower Saxony is looking for a private investor for Norddeutsche Landesbank Girozentrale, the German state is planning to retain a majority share in the bank, Handelsblatt wrote, citing a Reuters report. The Lower Saxony finance ministry said it was reviewing all options for the lender, adding that it had not yet made a definitive decision on the matter.

* Vontobel Holding AG increased its 2020 profitability targets with its return on equity now expected to exceed 14%, up from 12% previously and its cost-to-income ratio seen to improve to less than 72%, compared to a previous target of 75%.

FRANCE AND BENELUX

* France-based CNP Assurances SA named Deputy CEO Antoine Lissowski as interim CEO, effective Sept. 1.

* Dutch lender ING Groep NV has paid €21 million for a "small" minority stake in Irish fintech company Transfermate, De Telegraaf reported.

SPAIN AND PORTUGAL

* CaixaBank SA is expecting core revenues to increase by 4% in 2018 as it benefits from increasing demand for lending in a highly competitive market, according to CEO Gonzalo Gortázar.

* Liberbank SA reported second-quarter net attributable income of €55 million, up from €35 million a year ago. For the first half, the Spanish lender's net attributable income rose on a yearly basis to €84 million from €67 million.

* Unicaja Banco SA posted second-quarter net attributable income of €47 million, up from €34 million a year earlier. The bank's first-half net attributable income increased year over year to €105 million from €86 million.

* The European Commission is tightening Caixa Geral de Depósitos SA's nonperforming loans ratio, lowering it to a maximum of 7% of its total loan portfolio, Jornal de Negócios wrote.

ITALY AND GREECE

* Intesa Sanpaolo SpA is selling a €250 million portfolio of nonperforming loans related to Italian solar photovoltaic projects, Il Sole 24 Ore said, noting that Luxembourg group WRM and Fortress are said to be among those eyeing the portfolio. The bank is also reportedly working on the disposal of €250 million in unlikely-to-pay loans.

* Moody's raised Cyprus' long-term issuer rating to Ba2 from Ba3, citing the ongoing recovery of the country's banking sector and the positive trend in the government balance sheet.

NORDIC COUNTRIES

* Sweden's niche banks are outperforming their bigger market rivals in the strategic area of consumer loans, currently showing double-digit growth in their consumer loan books compared to the Swedish market's leading five lenders, Dagens Industri reported.

* Jyske Bank A/S has no immediate plans to reduce its branch network further before 2020, FinansWatch reported. CEO Anders Dam is not ruling out additional downsizing after 2020 as part of its scaled-up emphasis on digitalization of customer service platforms.

* General insurance players in Sweden are bracing themselves for significant claims relating to widespread summer fires that have destroyed forest plantations and private property in large areas of central Sweden, Svenska Dagbladet wrote.

EASTERN EUROPE

* The Russian central bank kept its key rate at 7.25% per annum, saying that annual inflation is expected to return to its target by early 2020.

* The Russian central bank intends to prohibit the sale of banks' subordinated bonds to individuals in order to protect unqualified investors from risks related to financial instruments of this type, Vedomosti reported.

* The process of forming a noncore assets bank from National Bank Trust PJSC and JSC Rost Bank has been completed following the legal and operational merger of the two lenders, Otkritie Financial Corp. Bank said.

* The Russian central bank revoked the license of Opora Insurance JSC due to the insurer's noncompliance with financial stability and solvency requirements, news agency Prime reported.

* The New Development Bank, launched by the BRICS countries, could open an office in Moscow, Reuters reported, citing Kirill Dmitriev, head of the Russian Direct Investment Fund and a member of the BRICS Business Council.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

Asia-Pacific: ICICI Bank Q1 profit down; 2 Japan banks to merge; Samsung Securities CEO leaves

Middle East & Africa: Leumi to sell credit card unit to Warburg Pincus; Moody's downgrades Zambia

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Sheryl Obejera, Ed Meza, Danielle Rossingh, Gerard O'Dwyer, Beata Fojcik, Heather O'Brian, Brian McCulloch, Praxilla Trabattoni and Mariana Aldano contributed to this report.

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