* The U.K. and EU reached a Brexit deal yesterday, paving the way for a vote in U.K. Parliament this weekend amid continued opposition from Northern Ireland's Democratic Unionist Party. The U.K. government needs 320 votes to get the deal approved, with the DUP carrying 10 votes.
* The G-7 Group of Seven wealthy nations said stablecoins like Facebook Inc.'s Libra cryptocurrency should not be allowed to launch until the financial stability risks they pose are addressed, Reuters reported. However, global regulators have no plans to ban them.
* The European Commission is looking into antitrust concerns involving the digital payments service Apple Pay, the Financial Times reported.
* The European Banking Authority has extended the deadline for migration to stronger customer authentication under the revised Payment Services Directive for e-commerce card-based payment transactions to Dec. 31, 2020. The original deadline was set at Sept. 14.
UK AND IRELAND
* London Stock Exchange Group PLC reported unaudited third-quarter gross profit of £529 million, compared to £465 million a year ago. Additionally, LSE said its proposed acquisition of financial data analytics platform Refinitiv is progressing well, and appointed David Shalders the chief integration officer, reporting to CEO David Schwimmer. CFO David Warren will retire from the company and step down from the board by 2020-end.
* HSBC Holdings PLC may scale back equities sales and trading units in France, Germany, the U.S. and the U.K. as part of cost cutting plan, insiders told Bloomberg News. About 45 jobs are likely to go in New York.
* The European Securities and Markets Authority has criticized the U.K. for its derivatives data quality supervision, assessing it to be similar to Cyprus. The U.K. FCA said it did not agree with the assessment, the Financial Times reported.
* U.K.-based Davies Group Ltd. acquired Alternative Service Concepts LLC, a workers' compensation and property and casualty third-party administrator.
* The case brought by the U.K. Serious Fraud Office against former Barclays PLC executives relating to Qatari investments during the global financial crisis is "misconceived," defense lawyers for the bankers said, according to the Financial Times. A jury heard that Roger Jenkins would have been "insane" to risk his job and compensation by coming up with a plan for a secret side deal with Qatar, who funded an emergency rescue in 2008.
* U.K.-based companies Tedaisy Insurance Group and Intrinsia Insurance Group have merged under the former's umbrella in an all-share deal.
GERMANY, SWITZERLAND AND AUSTRIA
* Swiss bank Credit Suisse Group AG is introducing negative interest rates on Swiss franc accounts of -0.75% for wealthy private clients and corporations with more than CHF2 million in account balance, AWP reported. For corporate customers with a cash balance of over CHF10 million, an interest rate of -0.85 per cent will be charged. The new regulation will apply to private customers from January 2020 onwards and for corporate clients as of Nov. 15, 2019.
* Swiss bank UBS Group AG will pay more than €10 million to settle a money-laundering investigation in Italy, Reuters wrote.
* Credit Suisse has committed to update its internal policies to safeguard indigenous communities affected by clients' projects after mediation over a Dakota pipeline, Swissinfo.ch reported.
* Felix Hufeld, president of the German federal financial supervisory authority BaFin, in an interview with Wirtschaftswoche urged financial institutions facing persistently low interest rates to make their businesses "weatherproof," saying that the interest rate environment was a reality the banks must recognize. He said the business models of many institutions were too complex and they had to "critically question which activities and products really make money."
* German online bank N26 Bank GmbH yesterday opened an office in Vienna which will function as a technology and innovation hub and employ 300 staff in the long term, Der Standard wrote. It is the company's third large hub in Europe, after Berlin and Barcelona. Die Presse also had a report.
FRANCE AND BENELUX
* A controversial Belgian tax of 0.15% on securities accounts over €500,000 was deemed unconstitutional by the country's Constitutional Court, De Tijd reported. The ruling means the tax, which was introduced last year, will be scrapped from 2020.
* Belfius Banque SA could close some of its 650 branches in Belgium, to L'Echo, citing unions.
SPAIN AND PORTUGAL
* In its latest cost-cutting round following the integration of Banco Popular Español SA, Banco Santander SA is to close 175 offices on Friday, wrote Europa Press. Most closures will be in the northern regions of Catalonia and Galicia. In total the company is planning the closure of a total of 1,150 branches in this round.
* Portugal's ASF insurance industry regulator has concluded a suitability assessment into António Tomás Correia's leadership of Montepio Geral – Associação Mutualista, the mutual association that controls Caixa Económica Montepio Geral Caixa Económica Bancária SA, concluding that he should not continue serving at the group, Público reported. Tomás Correia has been at the center of controversy due to alleged management irregularities.
ITALY AND GREECE
* Investment firm Blackstone is ready to present an offer for a €350 million real estate portfolio put on sale by Italy's Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, MF reported. Offers are due by Nov. 18.
* The Estonian government wants U.S. authorities to transfer financial penalties levied on Danske Bank A/S and Swedbank AB (publ) to its Treasury, Børsen reported. American authorities are expected to penalize the two Nordic banks for breaches of financial crime laws pertaining to large-scale money-laundering activities through branches in Estonia. Estonia's finance minister Martin Helme wants the U.S. to return most of the money to Estonia.
* State-controlled PAO Promsvyazbank and Russian National Commercial Bank will become shareholders of an exchange that Moscow is creating to list the shares of sanctions-hit companies, news agency TASS reported. Russian Deputy Finance Minister Alexei Moiseev expects the exchange could launch operations in December.
* A Ukrainian court ordered the unfreezing of shares of PAO Sberbank of Russia's Ukrainian unit Sberbank JSC, noting that the shares belong to the Russian parent and not the Russian state, Kommersant reported. The shares were frozen as part of court proceedings launched by companies affiliated with Ukrainian businessman Ihor Kolomoisky to receive compensation for assets seized by Russia during the annexation of Crimea in 2014.
* The Polish Financial Supervision Authority expects that local lenders will form a uniform approach to the issue of setting aside additional provisions on recent European court rulings regarding Swiss franc loans and repayment of loan fees, the FSA's head Jacek Jastrzębski told news agency PAP. The official also noted that Polish banks are already in talks with auditors regarding the provisions.
* Meanwhile the number of court cases launched by Swiss franc mortgage holders against Polish banks continues to grow, Puls Biznesu wrote. A district court in Warsaw received 1,300 new lawsuits in the third quarter of 2019, which is comparable with the number of lawsuits filed during the entire first half of the year, the newspaper said, citing Bloomberg News.
* Generali's Croatian unit Generali Osiguranje D.D. agreed to purchase local nonlife insurer Izvor osiguranje dd, SEENews reported. The transaction is pending regulatory approvals.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
Asia-Pacific: Bank of China leads M&A race for Irish broker; IPOs in South Korea, India
Middle East & Africa: Emirates NBD launches rights issue; Morocco's BCP buys 71% of Madagascar bank
Latin America: Infighting at BNDES; PagSeguro prices follow-on offer
North America: Morgan Stanley Q3 EPS up YOY; Highland Capital Management files for bankruptcy
NOW FEATURED ON S&P GLOBAL MARKET INTELLIGENCE
Favorable market turn prompted Nasdaq-bound insurer IGI's hunt for capital: COO: The $121 million in capital from the merger with Tiberius will allow the 17-year-old insurer to pursue its growth plans, including a push into the U.S. excess and surplus market, but COO Hatem Jabsheh said the company will expand cautiously.
Stablecoins could be counterweight to US dollar hegemony, says BoE's Carney: Stablecoins — cryptocurrencies backed by a basket of different currencies and bonds — could play an important role in the movement away from U.S. dollar hegemony in global markets, according to Mark Carney.
Ben Meggeson, Arno Maierbrugger, Danielle Rossingh, Gerard O'Dwyer, Beata Fojcik, Yael Schrage, Stephanie Salti, Sophie Davies and Helen Popper contributed to this report.
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