S&P Global Market Intelligence presents the week's latest news and trends in Latin American banking.
* Chile's recently proposed regulations on provisions could dampen the availability of credit and force the banking sector to reserve an extra $500 million, local banking executives reportedly said, nearly twice the amount estimated by the country's banking superintendent, the SBIF.
* Mexico's central bank has launched a public consultation on new draft rules regarding the charges and exchange rates applied by credit and debit card issuers for foreign currency payments and withdrawals.
Banks in trouble
* Argentine courts started official bankruptcy proceedings for troubled lender Banco Finansur SA.
* Brazil's competition watchdog Cade will investigate five of the country's banks following a complaint by credit card financial technology firm Nubank that the banks are harming competition in the card-issuing market.
* Brazilian securities commission CVM is looking into possible irregularities in the selling of shares in telecommunications firm Oi in 2014 and is investigating the alleged involvement of several Brazilian banks.
* Total credit growth among Mexican banks and other financial institutions slowed to 2.3% during the third quarter of 2017 as higher interest rates and macroeconomic uncertainty took hold, data from the country's CNBV showed.
* Total credit to the private sector in Peru, which includes loans by banks, savings and loan cooperatives, and finance companies, was up 7.3% year on year for February, the Banco Central de Reserva del Perú said.
* Demand for consumer credit in Brazil fell 8.1% in February from the previous month on a seasonally adjusted basis but grew 8.0% compared with a year earlier, credit research firm Boa Vista SCPC said.
* Loan disbursements by Brazilian state-run bank Banco Nacional de Desenvolvimento Econômico e Social reached 6.85 billion Brazilian reais in the first two months of the year, 32% lower compared to the same period in 2017.
* Banco Ahorro Famsa SA Institución de Banca Múltiple in 2018 aims to increase its credit portfolio among small and medium-sized companies and fintech solutions to 3.50 billion Mexican pesos from 1.50 billion pesos presently, the lender's chairman, José Luis Ochoa Bautista, said.
In other news
* Banco do Estado do Rio Grande do Sul SA is looking into putting card payment unit Banrisul Cartões S.A. up for an initial public offering.
* South Korea's Hyundai Capital Services Inc. and Banco Santander (Brasil) SA will invest in an auto financing joint venture with a total paid-in capital of 33.30 billion won, industry sources said.
* Banco de Bogotá SA's profit for the fourth quarter of 2017 fell 25.2% from a year earlier to reach 409.7 billion Colombian pesos, as the bank's provision expenses shot 41.3% higher.
* Banco Itaú Argentina SA said it is being sued by a group of eight customers who filed a class-action lawsuit against the bank for alleged unjust operations regarding foreign currencies used by retirees and pensioners to carry out payments denominated in foreign currencies.
* The resignation of Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski could likely affect the growth prospects of local banks in the short term, according to Valeria Azconegui, vice president-senior analyst for Moody's.
* Banco Mercantil del Norte SA Institución de Banca Múltiple's partnership with Amazon.com Inc. to launch a rechargeable debit card in Mexico is credit positive for the bank, according to Moody's.
* Itaú Unibanco Holding SA and Banco Bradesco SA together with U.S.-based Bank of America Corp. are working on a loan to a group of companies that may reach up to $6 billion.
* The board of Argentina's Banco Industrial SA approved the acquisition of reciprocal guarantee firm Garantía de Valores S.G.R.
Featured this week on S&P Global Market Intelligence
* Hires and Fires: A weekly rundown of executive management, board and other personnel moves at Latin American financial institutions.
* Ratings Roundup: A summary of various ratings actions on Latin American financial institutions and economies.