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Japanese banks see profit decline; ANZ may sell bank stakes

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Japanese banks see profit decline; ANZ may sell bank stakes

S&P Global Market Intelligence offers our top picks of banking news stories and more published throughout the week. Please note that some entries may have links to third-party sources that may require a subscription.

Asia-Pacific banks report profit decline

* Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. reported a 13.0% year-over-year decline in net profit for the nine months ended Dec. 31, 2016.

* Mizuho Financial Group Inc. reported a 2.8% decline in net income for the nine months ended Dec. 31, 2016, as net interest income dropped while expenses surged.

* Resona Holdings Inc. posted a 0.3% decline in net income for the nine-month period, while Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc.'s net income for the period edged up 0.7%, as an increase in expenses erased a gain in fee and commission income.

* ICICI Bank Ltd. posted a 19.1% decline in net profit for the fiscal third quarter ended Dec. 31, 2016.

* Public Bank Bhd. expects operating conditions "to be even more challenging in 2017" as it reported a 0.6% decline in fourth-quarter 2016 net profit.

* Meanwhile, Housing Development Finance Corp. Ltd. posted a 12.8% increase in net profit for the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2016.

* PT Bank Rakyat Indonesia (Persero) Tbk reported a 3.2% increase in net profit for the full year 2016, on the back of increased net interest income.

ANZ eyes sale of bank stake, Other M&A updates

* Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. is looking to sell stakes in Asian banks as it seeks to focus on corporate clients overseas.

* The South Korean government closed the sale of a 29.7% stake in Woori Bank after receiving payment from IMM Private Equity for an additional 2% stake in the bank.

* State Bank of India is reportedly looking to raise its stake in two credit card joint ventures with General Electric Co.

* The Nepalese government approved a proposed merger of Rastriya Banijya Bank Ltd. and NIDC Development Bank.

* Sri Lanka-based Lanka Orix Leasing Co. Plc reportedly acquired a majority stake in Pakistan's PakOman Microfinance Bank.

* Resona Bank Ltd. agreed to acquire Singapore-based AFC Merchant Bank and convert it into a wholly owned subsidiary.

* India-based IFCI Ltd. denied news reports that it was in talks for a merger with India Infrastructure Finance Co. Ltd.

Legal, regulatory developments

* Japanese trust banks are planning to launch legal actions against struggling Toshiba Corp. over an accounting scandal.

* National Australia Bank Ltd. agreed to return A$36.5 million to superannuation members after it incorrectly charged them for advice they did not get and wrongly denied their insurance claims.

* Commonwealth Bank of Australia unit Bankwest refunded A$4.9 million to customers for overcharging interest on home loans, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission said.

* The Indian government only allocated 100 billion rupees in additional capital for state-owned banks for fiscal 2017-2018, a move that could force some lenders to tap the equities market and sell noncore assets.

* Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India lifted the current account withdrawal limits and cash withdrawal limits from ATMs.

* In separate decisions, the central banks of Japan, Pakistan and Bangladesh kept their respective policy rates unchanged.

In other news

* More than a month after obtaining a final license to operate a small finance bank, India-based Au Financiers filed for its proposed IPO seeking to sell 53,422,169 shares with a face value of 10 rupees each.

* Pan Asia Banking Corp. Plc received approval from shareholders to issue 147,520,543 new shares by way of a rights offering at a ratio of one share for every two shares held.

* India's Department of Posts, or India Post, reportedly obtained a license from the Reserve Bank of India to commence operations of its payments bank.

* Philippines' BDO Unibank Inc. plans to open 50 to 70 branches in 2017 after the completion of its rights offering.

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