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Basel eyes problem loans; Shafir leaving Credit Suisse; ING completes NN offload


Street Talk | Episode 98: Regulatory scrutiny having cooling effect on community bank M&A


Insight Weekly: M&A outlook; US community bank margins; green hydrogen players' EU expansion


Street Talk | Episode 97: Recessionary fears still keeping bank investors on the sidelines


Making sanctions effective: Key themes for banks

Basel eyes problem loans; Shafir leaving Credit Suisse; ING completes NN offload

Basel eyes problemasset harmonization: The Basel Committee on Banking Supervision issued a consultative documentregarding the prudential treatment of problem assets in an aim to harmonize thedefinitions of nonperforming exposures and of forbearance among banks. Thecommittee is seeking comments on its proposals until July 15.

* Online trading startups TeraExchange and Javelin Capital Marketsare preparing antitrust lawsuits against a number of global banks, includingBarclays Plc,BNP Paribas SA,Deutsche Bank AG,HSBC Holdings Plc andUBS Group AG, forallegedly conspiring to block customers who tried to trade interest rate swapson the two firms' platforms, insiders tellIFR. TeraExchange could file alawsuit as early as today, with Javelin Capital Markets' lawsuit to follow.

* The U.K. Treasury saidBritain initiated an agreement with Germany, France, Italy and Spain on theexchange of data on company beneficial ownership registers and new registers oftrusts, as part of efforts to fight tax evasion and corruption. The fivecountries will launch a European pilot that will begin to explore the best waysfor countries to share tax information, with a view to developing a globalcommon standard leading to the interlinking of national registries. Reutersand SkyNews have reports.

* The European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authorityrecommendedstrengthening European rules on institutions for occupational retirementprovision with a standardized risk assessment to calculate the impact ofcommon, pre-defined stress scenarios. EIOPA also called on national supervisorsto have sufficient powers to act in response to conclusions of the standardizedrisk assessment. With the proposal, EIOPA dropped plans to establish an EU-widesolvency regime for pension funds, Reuters reports.

* France and Italy want the European Stability Mechanism toprovide the Single Resolution Fund with a credit line as a short-term fundingsolution, Reuters reports.A joint document from the two countries says a credit line is "thesimplest and most consistent option" amid German opposition to agovernment-funded backstop for the SRF.


Brexit warningsas campaign begins: The Bank of England's monetary policy committee votedunanimously to keep the bank rate unchanged at 0.5% and to maintain the stockof purchased assets financed by the issuance of central bank reserves at £375billion. The BoE said yesterday that the committee is likely to react morecautiously to data news over the next few months as the effects of thereferendum on Britain's membership in the EU are likely to make macroeconomicand financial market indicators harder to interpret. Campaigning for the June23 referendum officially begins today.

* Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank AG Co-CEO John Cryan warned that a votefor the U.K. to leave the EU would cost London its role as the trading centerfor European government bonds and foreign exchange, saying it would be odd totrade such securities in "the non-EU branch of a German bank" in thecity, the Financial Times reports.Lloyds Banking GroupPlc warned that the referendum and a Brexit vote would likely causeshort-term economic uncertainty and potential volatility, while the longer-termimpact is unclear, the paper writes.

* IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde voiced support forthe U.K. to stay in the EU, saying she hopes that the country's "longmarriage" with the union does not break, The Guardian reports.Lagarde repeated a previous warning that the risk of a so-called Brexit is aserious concern, while World Bank President Jim Yong Kim also stressed that theU.K. would be stronger in the union.

* BarclaysPlc Chairman John McFarlane advised the bank's staff not to engagein activities that are considered to be campaigning for a specific outcome ofthe U.K. referendum on EU membership, Sky News reports.

* Man GroupPlc today reported$78.6 billion in funds under management as of March 31, compared to $78.7billion at Dec. 31, 2015. The company recorded first-quarter net inflows of$500 million, comprising sales of $5.1 billion and redemptions of $4.6 billion.

* LiverpoolVictoria Friendly Society Ltd., known as LV=, saidtoday that CEO Mike Rogers will step down after 10 years at the helm. He willcontinue to lead the business for the remainder of the year and into 2017 asrequired to ensure a smooth transition.

* Royal Bankof Scotland Group Plc is planning to cut approximately 600 jobs atits U.K. consumer banking business and close about 32 branches, Bloomberg News reports,citing the Unite union. RBS is likely to discuss further job cuts across theU.K. with employees, insiders tell the newswire.

* The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority is lookingto ban former UBS GroupAG derivatives trader Arif Hussein from any role in regulatedfinancial services due to his alleged involvement in rigging LIBOR and otherbenchmark interest rates. Hussein disputes the FCA decision and has referredthe matter to the U.K. Upper Tribunal.

* AberdeenAsset Management Plc namedMartin Jennings to the newly created role of head of the Aberdeen Digitaldivision. Jennings will be responsible for the recently acquired Parmenion andwill also oversee Aberdeen's joint venture with Hymans Robertson.

* FBD HoldingsPlc namedJohn O'Grady CFO and an executive director of the group and FBD Insurance Plc.O'Grady will join the group July 1 and will take over from Paul D'Alton, whohas served as interim CFO since October 2015. 


Shafir to leaveCredit Suisse: Robert Shafir, Credit Suisse Group AG's chairman of the Americasregion, is set to exit at the end of June, TheWall Street Journal reports.Shafir stepped down from Credit Suisse's executive board in October after acorporate overhaul. A spokeswoman confirmed Shafir's departure.

* In an effort to combat tax evasion, the German state ofNorth Rhine-Westphalia forwarded data of Swiss bank accounts with more thanCHF100 billion in assets to 27 countries to verify if taxes had been paid,Reuters reports.The state obtained the data from CDs that it had previously bought and evaluated,North-Rhine Westphalia Finance Minister Norbert Walter-Borjans said onThursday.

* Deutsche BankAG agreed to a special audit of its risk management systemsrequested by German shareholder lobby group DSW, Reuters reports.The audit will center on whether Deutsche Bank's control functions can properlydetect legal risks that may lead to high provisions, DSW said. The audit, to becarried out by BDO, is part of a settlement to a legal challenge launched byDSW.

* Meanwhile, Deutsche Bank appointedPamela Root global head of compliance and group chief compliance officereffective June 6. Root, who will be based in London, joins from , where she hasheld the same post since 2009.


INGcompletes NN sale: ING GroepNV said yesterday that it completed the sale of its remaining stakein NN Group NV for€30.15 per share, generating gross proceeds of about €1.4 billion. ING said itwill incur a second-quarter loss of about €100 million on the sale. BloombergNews has a report.

* Fitch Ratings yesterdaytookvariousactionson a hostof Beneluxbanks,including upgrading ING Groep, ING Bank NV, ABN AMRO Bank NV, SNS Bank NV and Belfius Banque SA and revising to positive from stablethe outlook on KBC BankNV and KBC GroupNV. Meanwhile, Moody's revised to negative the outlook onAEGON NV, citingamong other factors the insurer's reduced geographic diversity after it agreedto sell most of its U.K. annuity portfolio, DeTelegraaf notes.

* BNP ParibasSA introduced a voluntary departure plan targeting 675 jobs in itscorporate and investment banking division in France over the next three years,or more than 10% of its total workforce in this division in the country, accordingto Les Echos. At the same time221 jobs will be created in the digital arena. L'Agefiand BloombergNews also report.

* Société GénéraleSA will today name Alain Fischer to the post of chief digitalofficer, Les Echos writes.In the investment banking division, Fischer will be in charge of moving theoffer and sale of all asset classes for institutional investors and big bankstoward a personalized hub used by 20,000 people.


Padoan eyes€50B Atlante leverage effect: Italy's new Atlante fund will unblock some€50 billion worth of nonperforming loans thanks to a leverage effect, ItalianFinance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan tellsClass-CNBC in an interview published in full by MF. UniCreditSpA will invest up to €1 billion in the fund and will not make upmore than 20% of its capital, MF citesCEO Federico Ghizzoni as saying. Bloomberg News also covers.

* Meanwhile, Reuters citesGhizzoni as telling shareholders that he was pleased with his relationship withUniCredit's board, playing down reports that he has lost support from keyshareholders.

* Banca Montedei Paschi di Siena SpA aims to seal within a few months the saleof an NPL portfolio secured by €250 million and by the end of the first half a largerportfolio of unsecured NPLs, MF writes.

* Recently named Banca Carige SpA Chairman Giuseppe Tesauro and CEO GuidoBastianini will meet with the ECB on April 27 to discuss the lender'sstrategies, Il Messaggero writes, adding that the central bankrejected a request for an extension of a requirement to present a new businessplan by May 31.

* IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said yesterdaythat her institution "will not walk away" from the so-called Greekbailout troika, but its participation may vary depending on the structure of Greece'slatest €86 billion bailout, Reuters reports.Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem saidthis week's talks on securing further aid for Greece will not lead to newdevelopments, but that the parties will have more time to iron out differencesnext week in Amsterdam.

* Greek banks' dependence on emergency liquidity assistancefell to €66.2 billion at the end of March from €68 billion a month earlier, Imerisia writes.Direct ECB lending amounted to €35.3 billion, down from €36.2 billion.

* Spain's banking sector in 2015 achieved total attributableprofit of €10.39 billion, up 5.6% compared to 2014 and the third successiveyear of profits after an industry cleanup began in 2012, Europa Press writes,citing the Spanish banking association.

* Angolan authorities authorized the merger betweenMillennium BCP'sBanco Millennium AngolaSA and fellow Angolan lender Banco Privado Atlântico SA, Publico notes.


Altor acquiresstake in Skandiabanken: Altor Fund IV becamethe largest shareholder in Norway's Skandiabanken ASA by acquiring 26.6 million shares, or a25% stake, from Livförsäkringsbolaget Skandia ömsesidigt, for 46Norwegian kroner per share. E24 has areport.

* Sweden's FSA expects to complete its investigation intopossible breaches of tax laws by Nordea Bank AB, triggered by revelations from the PanamaPapers, "in months rather than years," Dagens Industri writes.

* SwedbankAB's former CEO, Michael Wolf, was interviewed by officials fromthe Swedish Economic Crime Authority on Thursday, accordingto Sydsvenskan. Thequestioning centered on suspected insider trading by Wolf in the shares oftechnology company Oniva Online Group.


Managementshuffle at Russian bank: AORussian Standard Bank's management board deputy chairman, VladimirPyshny, is leaving the post, Kommersantreports, adding that managementboard Chairman Dmitry Levin could also step down. The changes are being carriedout at the initiative of the bank's main shareholder, Roustam Tariko, who isdissatisfied with its financial results.

* Russian tax and law enforcement authorities carried outsearches in Russian company Onexim, as well as , Russian Capital Bank, Russian Credit Bank and other companiescontrolled by Onexim's owner, Mikhail Prokhorov, Vedomosti reports.Kommersant says the searches could be linked tothe activities of Prokhorov's media holding RBC and that officers taking partin the searches were interested in documents regarding payments to offshorecompanies.

* One of PAOPromsvyazbank's minority shareholders wants to sell a 3.6% stake inthe bank via the Moscow Exchange, with the shares to be offered at 6.38 Russiankopecks apiece, Vedomosti reports.The value of the stake to be sold is estimated at 2.5 billion rubles. Investorapplications will be accepted by investment firm Aton until April 21.

* Credit Suisse, UBS, Citi, UniCredit and Raiffeisen appliedto participate in privatization transactions of Russian state companies plannedfor 2016, Reuters reports,citing Interfax.

* The Polish central bank canceled the meeting of theFinancial Stability Committee planned for Monday because President Andrzej Dudaneeds more time to polish a foreign-currency mortgage conversion proposal,Reuters reports.

* Turkey's Alternatifbank AS, majority-owned by Qatar's , attractedsome $1.3 billion of interest for a $300 million issuance of 10-year BaselIII-compliant subordinated bonds, Finans Gündem reports,citing General Manager Müge Öner.


* Industrial& Commercial Bank of China Ltd. said its cooperation withSpanish authorities on an investigation related to alleged money laundering inMadrid will continue after two of the lender's employees were conditionallyreleased, Xinhua News Agency reports.

* Japan's Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission isexpected to take administrative action against unit CreditSuisse Securities (Japan) Ltd. for allegedly leaking the earnings forecast of alisted company, The Nikkei reports. The incident took place inSeptember.


Crucial ECBcollateral waiver for Greek banks hinges on bailout deal: The ECBcould grant Greek banks a waiver to post sovereign Greek bonds as collateralfor loans, but this depends on how negotiations between the government and theIMF-EU group get on.

With bank fundproposed, Italy looks to ease NPL recovery: Italian FinanceMinister Pier Carlo Padoan says the government will make vital legal changes tospeed the recovery of nonperforming loans, but the recent track record ofimplementing legislation may offer reason for pause.

Middle East &Africa Monitor: MENA news through April 13

Rich Lovie, Ed Meza,Stephanie Salti, Chantal Groothengel, Yael Schrage, Praxilla Trabattoni,Mariana Aldano, Thanasis Kakalis, Gerard O'Dwyer, Beata Fojcik and Ali Kayalarcontributed to this report.

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