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In This List

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MUFG to get new head; Australia raises levies on financial firms

GREATER CHINA

* DBS Bank (China) Ltd., a DBS Group Holdings Ltd. unit, received a license from the People's Bank of China to act as a bond settlement agent in the country's interbank bond market.

* JPMorgan Chase & Co. is in talks with Shanghai International Trust Corp. Ltd. to buy out its 49% stake in China International Fund Management Co. Ltd., their fund management joint venture, Bloomberg News reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.

* The Asset Management Association of China, a self-regulating organization of fund managers, penalized Fuxing Group's private fund affiliates by revoking their licenses for alleged illegal practices and embezzlement worth around 36.6 billion yuan, Caixin reported.

* China's central bank added 300 billion yuan into the country’s financial system via a medium-term lending facility at an interest rate of 3.25%, China Daily reported. The People's Bank of China also added 100 billion yuan through 14-day reverse repurchases at an interest rate of 2.65%.

JAPAN AND KOREA

* Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. will name Deputy President Hironori Kamezawa president and CEO, The Nikkei reported, citing unnamed sources. Kamezawa replaces President Kanetsugu Mike, who will become the group's deputy chairman with the right of representation, according to the report.

* MUFG Bank Ltd. will be closing the financial centers of U.S.-based MUFG Union Bank NA's division, Pure Point, in late February, The Nikkei reported. The company currently has 22 centers in selected locations. The decision was made amid an increase of transactions being made online.

* Monex Group Inc. will start offering publicly traded investment trusts for private investors, The Nikkei reported. The company has established an investment advisory firm and will form a ¥10 billion fund in as early as June.

* Mirae Asset Daewoo Co. Ltd. will commence its payment gateway service, becoming the first brokerage firm to do so in collaboration with WeChat Pay, Yonhap News Agency reported, citing the firm.

* The dispute settlement committee of Seoul-based KEB Hana Bank agreed on a plan to compensate investors with up to 65% of their losses from missold derivative-linked funds, the Chosun Ilbo reported, citing the bank.

* Won Jong-gyu, CEO, president and chairman of Korean Reinsurance Co., said the company has completed the establishment of a second outlet in Shanghai, The Korea Times reported.

ASEAN

* Thailand's Siam Commercial Bank PCL and Ayeyarwady Bank Ltd., Myanmar's second-largest bank by assets, signed a memorandum of understanding on the development of cross-border payment and fund transfer services to support banking activities of retail customers and small and midsize enterprises in the two countries, according to a release.

* Malaysia's RHB Islamic Bank Bhd. decided to end its bancatakaful arrangement with Syarikat Takaful Malaysia Keluarga Bhd., effective July 31, The Sun reported. Under the arrangement, the lender offers family and general takaful products developed by the insurer. The bank said it expects to find a new long-term takaful partner by July 31.

* Indonesian state lender PT Bank Negara Indonesia (Persero) Tbk issued US$1 billion of certificates of deposit, Bisnis Indonesia said. Proceeds from the certificates, which have tenors of up to 12 months, will be used for business expansion and debt refinancing.

* The Monetary Authority of Singapore launched a scheme under which it will co-fund up to 70% of the eligible expenses of variable capital companies paid to Singapore-based service providers, The Business Times reported. The scheme is capped at S$150,000 per application and at a maximum of three variable capital companies per fund manager.

* Singapore-based CredoLab Pte. Ltd. fulfilled all of Indonesia's Financial Services Authority's requirements in its sandbox program and was recognized by the regulator as a credit-scoring financial technology firm, The Jakarta Post reported. The company expects to be registered and licensed later in 2020.

SOUTH ASIA

* U.S.-based KKR & Co. Inc. is injecting US$150 million of fresh equity in Indian unit KKR India Financial Services Pvt. Ltd through its balance sheet, The Economic Times reported. Sanjay Nayar, CEO of KKR India, called it a "demonstration of confidence."

* Piramal Capital & Housing Finance Ltd. raised 9 billion rupees from United Bank of India and Bank of India at a 8.9% rate for five years, The Economic Times reported. The nonbank financial company also raised 5 billion rupees from IndusInd Bank Ltd. at 9% for a year.

* Unions for bank workers in India called for a strike across the country from Jan. 31 through Feb. 1 after discussions with the India Banks' Association ran out of steam, Press Trust of India reported.

* Securities and Exchange Board of India rejected Axis Bank Ltd.'s request to allow it to invoke the pledged shares connected with Karvy Stock Broking Ltd., Press Trust of India reported. The lender said it approached the Securities Appellate Tribunal, which granted temporary relief, saying the status quo must be maintained until a later hearing.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

* U.K.-based Greensill Capital (UK) Ltd. hired former Australian minister Julie Bishop chairman of its Asia-Pacific operations, The Australian Financial Review reported.

* The Reserve Bank of Australia would levy the "highest" grade of scrutiny on technology giants such as Apple Inc. and Facebook Inc. if they venture into banking, The Australian reported, citing an internal paper from the central bank. Calvin Yap, head of the central bank's financial stability department, said in the paper that their access to data could be used for financial services.

* The Reserve Bank of Australia fears that the so-called buy-now-pay-later services are beginning to represent a threat to the country's financial stability and that they have not been through adverse circumstances, The Australian reported, citing an internal memo from the central bank. The memo added that some of them were taking advantage of gaps In consumer lending rules.

* The Australian Securities and Investments Commission confirmed that it raised levies on superannuation fund trustees, financial advisers, securities traders and mortgage brokers by up to 200% compared with the forecasted levies announced in March 2019, The Australian Financial Review reported. An ASIC spokeswoman said the increase was due to a rise in enforcement decisions.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

Middle East & Africa: QNB FY'19 result; Bank Audi's Egypt unit receives interest; Old Mutual wins case

Europe: Sweeping staff cuts at UBS; Italian banks' M&A view; Revolut to be valued at $5B

Latin America: Fosun said to sell 2 Brazil financial firms; BNP Paribas Mexico's bank license

North America: BofA Q4'19 profit up; Morningstar nears SEC settlement; BlackRock AUM grows 24%

Global Insurance: UnitedHealth earnings up; Chubb cat losses; R&Q joint CEO out; top 5 risks

R Sio, Sarun Saelee, Cathy Hwang, Emi White and Aditya Suharmoko contributed to this report.

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