* China's Fosun International Ltd. has decided to slash its stakes or even divest completely in Brazilian financial firms Guide Investimentos SA Corretora de Valores and Rio Bravo Investimentos SA, Valor Econômico reported, citing sources familiar with the matter. Fosun has hired Credit Suisse to find buyers for both firms. A source also told Reuters that Fosun is also accelerating a search for partners in Guide. In a statement sent to the newswire, Fosun said it is "looking for new investors to bolster its businesses in Brazil."
* BNP Paribas SA said it had secured a license from the CNBV banking regulator to operate in Mexico as a multiple banking entity, transforming from its previous status as a multi-purpose financial company or sofom, El Economista reported.
MEXICO AND CENTRAL AMERICA
* Panama-based Banco Aliado SA plans to absorb subsidiaries Banco Panamá SA and Allied Pacific Inc., subject to the approval of the country's banking regulator. Allied Pacific is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Banco Aliado and controls 100% of Banco Panamá's shares.
* Brazil's Economy Ministry slightly raised its GDP growth forecast for 2020 to 2.4% from 2.32%. It also raised the forecast for consumer price inflation to 3.62% for 2020, 9 basis points higher than a previous forecast made in October 2019. Waldery Rodrigues, the special secretary for finance, said the government expects recent fiscal tightening efforts helped to boost employment levels and economic activity in the country, but noted there is room for further improvement.
* Brazil's government and central bank are preparing a series of measures to allow the payment of utility bills and taxes at smaller banks and financial technology companies, Valor Econômico reported. At the moment, big banks dominate the activity, which generated revenues of 8.9 billion reais for Itaú Unibanco Holding SA, Banco do Brasil SA, Banco Bradesco SA, Caixa Econômica Federal and Banco Santander (Brasil) SA between January and September 2019.
* Peru's SBS banking industry supervisor has implemented a new deposit guarantee fund for credit unions, part of the entity's ongoing efforts to regulate the financial cooperative sector, El Comercio reported, citing the country's official gazette. Credit unions will be able to register to join the fund, and after two years of premium payments, their savers' deposits will be protected.
* Peru's economy grew 1.86% yearly in November, its smallest advance since May 2019, Gestión reported, citing data from the INEI statistics institute.
* Colombia's general insurance market grew 11.1% in the year ending October 2019, generating premiums of 11.81 trillion pesos, while the life insurance business expanded 11.35% to reach 12.82 trillion pesos in premiums, La República reported, citing the latest data from the country's financial superintendent.
* Chile-based Tanner Servicios Financieros SA plans to tap the Swiss market for a bond worth CHF200 million. The bond will have a term of 33 months and a 0.6% fixed coupon rate.
* Banco Security SA will pay out 671 million Chilean pesos to compensate 17,000 consumers who were affected by charges on its overdraft facilities, Diario Financiero reported.
* The Argentine central bank sold dollars for a second consecutive day as demand for greenbacks picked up, driving the peso up to 76.75 pesos per dollar in the parallel exchange market, El Cronista reported. The monetary authority sold $50 million each day after a spell of purchases aimed at bolstering its depleted international reserves.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
* Asia-Pacific: Thai bank eyes Myanmar bank stake; Australian banks want tighter fintech rules
* Middle East & Africa: QNB FY'19 result; Bank Audi's Egypt unit receives interest; Old Mutual wins case
Helen Popper contributed to this article.
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