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S&P Global Market Intelligence offers our top picks of banking news stories and more published throughout the week. Please note that some entries may have links to third-party sources that require a subscription.

Japan to boost growth of regional banks; China injects 400 billion yuan into financial system

* Japan's Financial Services Agency is considering a number of changes to rules governing regional banks to boost the ailing sector, the Financial Times reported, citing the regulator's commissioner, Toshihide Endo. The regulator could allow regional banks to engage in new business models and take part in areas outside their core business, among other plans.

* The People's Bank of China injected 400 billion yuan into the financial system to maintain sufficient liquidity ahead of the spring festival next week.

M&A corner

* Bank of Baroda, Sundaram Finance Ltd., State Bank of India, Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd. and Union Bank of India agreed to sell a total of 37.14% stake in Indian credit reporting company Equifax Credit Information Services Pvt. Ltd. for an aggregate of 3.38 billion rupees.

* International Finance Corp. sold 55.7 million shares of Vietnam Joint Stock Commercial Bank for Industry & Trade to trim its stake in the bank to 4.99% from 6.486%, Viet Nam News reported.

* Thailand's Kasikornbank PCL is looking to acquire a 35% stake in Myanmar-based Ayeyarwaddy Farmers Development Bank PCL, Myanmar Times reported, citing government data.

Change of plans

* Woori Financial Group Inc. dropped out of a preliminary bidding round for Prudential Financial Inc.'s South Korean unit, The Korea Herald reported, citing a Woori spokesperson.

* India's Canara Bank scrapped its plan to sell its entire stake in Can Fin Homes Ltd., without giving reasons. The bank, which owns a 29.99% stake in Can Fin Homes, was looking to sell 39,930,365 Can Fin Homes shares for about 10 billion rupees.

In other news

* Yes Bank Ltd. rejected an offer from Canadian investor Erwin Singh Braich and Hong Kong-based SPGP Holdings and said it is "willing to favorably consider" the offer of US$500 million Citax Holdings and Citax Investment Group. The bank also said it plans to raise up to 100 billion rupees of fresh funds by issuing securities.

* South Korea's KEB Hana Bank commenced the process of compensating some fund customers for 40%, 55% or 65% of losses attributed to its alleged misselling of derivatives-linked fund products, The Chosun Ilbo reported, citing the bank.

* Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc.'s U.S. unit, MUFG Union Bank NA, is closing all 22 physical branches of its PurePoint Internet banking service as most customers had fully migrated to online banking, The Nikkei reported.

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