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China bars 40 banks from interbank biz; HNA's overseas deals hit roadblock


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China bars 40 banks from interbank biz; HNA's overseas deals hit roadblock

* The People's Bank of China barred 40 banks, including China Construction Bank Corp., Bank of China Ltd. and Agricultural Bank of China Ltd., from performing interbank account business for three to six months after they were found to have breached regulations, Reuters reported, citing Caixin.

* Crystal Century Investment Ltd., a Hong Kong- and New York-based wealth management company, plans to open an office in Tokyo by November after the company received a business license from Japan's Financial Services Agency.

* HNA Group Co. Ltd. is facing issues with moving funds outside China for two overseas acquisition deals due to tightened foreign outflow rules in the country, Reuters reported, citing four people familiar with the process. The deals include the acquisition of London-based International Currency Exchange for about £200 million and a stake purchase deal in a Sweden hotel.


* The Chinese Communist Party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said Yang Jiacai, former assistant chairman of the China Banking Regulatory Commission, was suspected of taking bribes and his case would be transferred to the country's judiciary authorities, Caijing Magazine reported. The commission found that Yang had used his position to help others with promotions, among other allegations.

* A subsidiary of China Construction Bank Corp. in Beijing filed an application for property preservation and asked the local court to seize, pledge or freeze more than 250 million yuan of LeEco and Jia Yueting's assets, Caixin reported. China Merchants Bank Co. Ltd. had also applied for a property preservation order to block Jia and LeEco's assets worth more than 1.2 billion yuan.

* The board of directors of South China Insurance Co. Ltd. approved the appointment of Wu Chung-chuan, former general manager of the Taiwan Insurance Institute, as the insurance company's new chairman, Commercial Times reported.

* Taiwan's GDP growth may continue to lend support to the earnings and asset quality of local banks, boosting loan demand and easing default risks in the remaining months of 2017, the Taipei Times reported, citing Fitch Ratings. The rating agency expects a slightly higher loan growth for 2017 from an increase of 3% in 2016, noting that credit demand is likely to strengthen as exports to all major trading partners have increased since the final quarter of 2016.


* Robeco Groep NV named Shiro Tsubota as president and representative director for Japan, effective immediately.

* Japan's Government Pension Investment Fund appointed Eiji Hirano, vice chairman of MetLife, as the head of a newly formed management committee consisting of 10 members, including a chairman, The Nikkei reported.

* Bank of Kyoto Ltd. CEO Nobuhiro Doi said the company is looking to establish a trust business by 2019, The Nikkei reported. The company currently acts as an agent of trust banks but will consider obtaining regulatory approval to start its own service.


* Alliance Islamic Bank Bhd. promoted Rizal Il-Ehzan Fadil Azim as CEO, replacing Fozia Amanulla, who has been appointed chief business development officer of Alliance Bank Malaysia Bhd., The Star reported.

* The Monetary Authority of Singapore said it would regulate the use and circulation of digital tokens in the city-state if they only constitute products regulated under Singapore's Securities and Futures Act. Issuers of tokens falling under the criteria will be required to lodge and register a prospectus with the authority unless they are exempted.

* DBS Bank Ltd. will collaborate with Xero, a cloud accounting platform, to offer small and medium-sized enterprises the ability to link their DBS accounts with Xero's cloud accounting platform.

* Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. appointed Rufus Pinto as CEO of its Laos operations, effective Oct. 1. Pinto currently serves as regional country head for ANZ in Vanuatu, Kiribati and New Caledonia.


* India's Airtel Payments Bank formed a strategic partnership with Hindustan Petroleum Corp. Ltd. to facilitate the lender's customers by offering account opening services as well as cash deposits and withdrawals at Hindustan Petroleum's 14,000 gas stations in the country, Press Trust of India reported.

* State Bank of India's debit card holders can now use Samsung Pay to make secure payments using their mobile phones, Press Trust of India reported. The service was previously only available for credit card users of the bank.

* Nineteen Indian financial institutions were affected by 50 cyberattacks from November 2016 to June 2017, Press Trust of India reported, citing Union Minister Hansraj Gangaram Ahir. Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India said it is planning to conduct a "cyber audit" of all banks in the country, The Economic Times reported.


* Due diligence for My Credit Union Ltd. and Community CPS Australia Ltd.'s merger is largely completed, with the deal expected to be finalized in early 2018. The merger is subject to regulatory and My Credit Union members' approval.

* The Australian Securities and Investments Commission, or ASIC, said it did not find any systematic misconduct on the part of the country's banks with regard to their sales of credit card insurance. The ASIC also formed a consumer credit insurance working group with members from the banking industry and consumer advocates to further improve the situation.

* The Australian Bankers' Association said the government's planned Banking Executive Accountability Regime would make it difficult for the sector to attract executives, who will likely move to competitors such as insurance companies and superannuation funds that are unaffected by the rule changes, The Australian Financial Review reported.


Middle East & Africa: Qatar brings case to WTO; Moody's takes actions on Omani, Bahraini banks

Europe: Sabadell completes US unit sale; Direct Line, Man Group H1 profits up YOY

Latin America: Itaú Unibanco's Q2 profit rises; US sanctions Maduro

North America: JPMorgan to launch AI robot in Asia, US; 2 California banks ink $51M deal

North America Insurance: 2 states disclose '18 rate hikes; Sen. Hatch calls for attention to tax reform

Sally Wang, Sarun Saelee, Cathy Hwang, Emi White and Aditya Suharmoko contributed to this report.

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