* CITIC Securities Co. Ltd. agreed to acquire 100% equity interest in Guangzhou Securities Co. Ltd from Guangzhou Yuexiu Financial Holdings Group Co. Ltd. for up to 13.46 billion yuan. The deal is subject to shareholders' approval.
* The People's Bank of China will launch a new medium-term lending facility in late January to lend cash to banks for up to three years, Bloomberg News reported, citing central bank Governor Yi Gang. The move aims to encourage banks to issue loans to small and private companies facing credit shortages due to a government debt crackdown, the report said.
* China Development Bank plans to raise up to 24 billion yuan through the issuance of fixed-rate benchmark bonds on Jan. 14.
JAPAN AND KOREA
* Tokyo Star Bank Ltd. is planning to expand its commodity derivative business, The Nikkan Kogyo Shimbun reported. The company has formed a partnership with regional banks Miyazaki Bank Ltd., Taiko Bank Ltd. and Fukuho Bank Ltd., through which it provides commodity derivative products. It aims to enter into similar agreements with more regional banks by 2023.
* China has granted Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corp. a 3 billion yuan quota to invest in Chinese securities under the country's Renminbi Qualified Foreign Institutional Investment program, The Nikkei reported. The bank is the first Japanese financial institution to receive the grant.
* Japan's ORIX Corp. decided to issue US$500 million worth of senior unsecured notes due Jan. 16, 2024. The notes will bear an interest rate of 4.05% per annum.
* South Korea's Kyobo Life Insurance Co. Ltd. has selected Mirae Asset Daewoo Securities, Citigroup's global market securities unit and JP Morgan as additional financial advisers for its planned IPO in 2019, Yonhap News Agency reported.
* Thailand-based Kasikornbank PCL appointed Silawat Santivisat and Chongrak Rattanapian as senior executive vice presidents, Manager Daily reported. The lender also appointed Dithichai Limpodom and Tipakorn Saiphatana as executive vice presidents.
* Kittiphun Anutarasoti, president and CEO of CIMB Thai Bank PCL, called for justice after Krung Thai Bank PCL accused him of serious misconduct over loan approvals for Energy Earth PCL, which later caused the lender huge losses, Daily News reported. Krung Thai Bank extended 4.5 billion baht of loans to the company when Kittiphun served as a senior executive vice president at the bank.
* Indonesian Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati said it would be difficult for the country to achieve the GDP growth target of 5.3% in 2019, Infobank reported. She said GDP growth would likely be closer to 5%.
* IndusInd Bank Ltd.'s net profit for the third quarter ended Dec. 31, 2018, increased to 9.85 billion Indian rupees from 9.36 billion rupees in the prior-year period.
* Nonbank financial institutions have raised concerns with Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikant Das over the rising interest rates of bank loans offered to them, Business Standard reported.
* India-based ESAF Small Finance Bank Ltd. may launch an IPO by June 2021, The Hindu Business Line reported, citing Managing Director and CEO K Paul Thomas. The bank also plans to open 165 branches this fiscal year, in addition to its 300 branches.
* Meanwhile, ESAF Small Finance Bank entered into a partnership agreement with PNB MetLife India Insurance Co. Ltd., under which the insurer will offer its life insurance products and services to the bank's customers, The Hindu Business Line reported.
AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND
* Customer satisfaction for Australia's banks improved to 78.1% in November 2018 from 78% in October 2018, the first time since the finance royal commission inquiry started in January 2018, Verdict reported, citing a report from market research company Roy Morgan.
* Australia may require financial advisers to explain their recommendations that clients set up self-managed superannuation funds, or SMSFs, with balances below A$500,000, The Australian reported. A report from the Productivity Commission said that SMSFs with balances under A$500,000 paid higher costs and earn lower returns than members of regulated funds.
* The Reserve Bank of New Zealand appointed Scott Fisher as chief information officer. Fisher had been acting chief information officer since October 2018.
IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD
Middle East & Africa: UAE lender to swap Abraaj debt for fund stakes; PE firms invest in Prime Bank
Europe: UK faces new hard-Brexit hurdle; Deutsche eyes bonus cut; Carige taps state aid
Latin America: Banco do Brasil may IPO asset management arm; Itaú Corpbanca fine reduced
North America: Blackstone-backed auto lender going public; Citi plans majority-owned Chinese JV
Global Insurance: MetLife's new CEO; sidecars renewed after ILS slump; new state health plans
Janna Estares, Sally Wang, Sarun Saelee, Cathy Hwang, Emi White and Aditya Suharmoko contributed to this report.
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