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Bradford & Bingley loan sale resumed; Bankia-BMN merger likely in 2017


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Bradford & Bingley loan sale resumed; Bankia-BMN merger likely in 2017

Rumors swirl onwinding down ECB's asset purchases: An informal consensus is growing thatthe ECB will gradually scale back its asset purchases before ending itsquantitative easing program, and could wind down its purchases by €10 billion amonth, eurozone central bank officials tellBloomberg News. QE is scheduled to run until March 2017, but the ECB couldextend the program further if necessary. ECB media officer Michael Steen tweetedthat the Governing Council has not discussed such an issue.

* ECB Governing Council member Klaas Knot called on the central bank to assess the impact ofnegative interest rates on the profitability of European banks, Bloomberg News writes."The low interest rates not only create problems for life insurancecompanies and pension funds, but it also hurts the interest rate income forbanks," Knot said.

* Separately, ECB Chief Economist Peter Praet said there is nostrong evidence that the institution's monetary policy measures have anegative effect on banks' profitability, but acknowledged that the longer thecurrent low interest rate environment persists, "the greater thechallenges for bank profitability will be."

* U.S. financial services company Mastercard Inc.has rolled out its new identity check mobile app in Europeancountries including the U.K., Spain, Germany and Finland, The Independent reports.The service allows customers to verify their identity using "selfies"and fingerprint recognition when making online payments.


UK resumesBradford & Bingley loans sale: The U.K. government has resumed the saleof Bradford & BingleyPlc's £15.65 billion mortgage portfolio after putting it on hold inthe aftermath of the Brexit vote, insiders tellReuters. UK Asset Resolution, which is selling the loans, intends to sendprospective bidders nondisclosure agreements this week.

*  agreed tosell its retail andcorporate banking business in Egypt to Morocco-based . The deal isexpected to reduce Barclays' risk-weighted assets by approximately £2 billion. 

* to key commercialterms with Pomona Capital and Pantheon Ventures regarding the sale of "asignificant percentage" of its investment portfolio. Meanwhile, DavidAtterbury, managing director of HarbourVest Structured Solutions III LP, whoseunsolicited offer for SVG was deemed too low, called SVG's proposals complexand subject to "significantmarket and execution risk" while urging SVG shareholders to acceptits offer "without delay."

* A report by consultancy firm Oliver Wyman said the industry stands to lose up to £38 billion in revenue and 75,000 jobsin a "hard Brexit" scenario that would restrict the industry's accessto the European single market, Reuters reports.In comparison, Britain could lose about £2 billion in revenue and 4,000 jobs ifit manages to retain access to the European Economic Area on terms similar tothose currently in place.

* British lobby group The Investments and SavingsAssociation said clarity on the U.K.'s future relationship with the EU isurgently necessary to secure jobs rather than access to the single market,Reuters reports.The group submitted initial proposals to the U.K. Treasury that included thecreation of a two-tiered structure with separate rules for firms seeking totrade financial services in the EU and those that just want to cater to Britishclients.

* Michael Saunders, an external member of the Bank ofEngland's monetary policy committee, said the British economy couldgrow "clearly above 1%" in 2017 instead of below 1% as expected,unless there is a sharp rise in Brexit-related uncertainties and globalconditions disappoint markedly.

*  namedAndrew Sinfield head of European investment-grade corporate credit trading,Reuters writes.

* Maurice Kenny, ING Groep NV's head of client coverage in Ireland, saidthe Dutch group's plan to slash 7,000 jobs will not affect its employees in thecountry, the Irish Independent writes.


Deutsche Bank eyeing $4B to $5B to settleMBS claims: is looking at a possible settlement ofbetween $4 billion and $5billion with U.S. authorities for alleged misselling of MBS, Reuters writes, citing areport by German markets newsletter PlatowBrief. The lender is eyeing asettlement by the end of the month and is considering canceling bonuses and raising freshcapital, according to the report.

* CommerzbankAG CEO Martin Zielke expects not to pay a dividend for 2017 and2018 as the bank carries out its recently announced restructuring anddigitalization, Reuters reports.

* Deutsche Bank namedJack Rabun head of its asset management investment banking coverage for theAmericas, Reuters writes.Rabun joins the bank from UBSGroup AG, where he was most recently a senior member of its assetmanagement investment banking team.

* BlackRock Inc.,Deutsche Bank's single biggest shareholder, excoriated Europe's banks while calling for greatercross-border mergers in the sector, FrankfurterAllgemeine Zeitung reports. BlackRockVice Chairman Philipp Hildebrand described the long-term performance ofEuropean banks as "shockingly bad," adding that investors currentlyhave little interest in actively investing in bank shares.

* dodged insolvency after it was able to complete formerly open securitiestransactions and collect outstandingpayment. The German securities trading bank filed for insolvency last Friday but said yesterday thatit withdrew the application following the completion of the transaction,leading its clearing bank, HSBCTrinkaus & Burkhardt AG, to reactivate its blocked accounts, Börsen-Zeitung adds.

* named Christopher Lohmann CEO. Lohmann succeeds Thomas Leicht, who isstepping down next year.

* namedDaniel von Borries CFO of Swiss Life Deutschland as of Nov. 1, Börsen-Zeitung reports.

* A majority ofHeta Asset ResolutionAG's creditors has accepted a bond buyback offer made by theAustrian province of Carinthia, Handelsblatt reports.Three-quarters of the bad bank's senior bondholders agreed to the offer, aswell as half of its junior debt holders.  


AXA rebuffsGenerali merger suggestions: AXA CEO Thomas Buberl said told Süddeutsche Zeitung that a merger with makes no sense but that hewas open to working with GoogleInc., L'Argus de l'Assurance reports.

* OrangeSA completed the acquisition of a 65% stake in 's and is on target toopen its first accounts in spring 2017, LaTribune reports.

* France has 3 million people in a fragile banking situationand another 500,000 who do not have a bank account, according to a report fromL'Observatoire de l'inclusion bancaire, LesEchos reports.It adds that 69,000 people used the government's "right to anaccount" legislation in 2015.

* The French government has ruled out country-specificlegislation to control the use of blockchain technology, Les Echos reports.

* About half of IT jobs at will go as part of areorganization at the ING unit, L'Echo notes.The firm will also let go about 33% of retail jobs, more than half of itsfinance division and two-thirds of its financial markets unit.  


Bankia-Banco MareNostrum merger likely in mid-2017: Bankia SA Chairman José Ignacio Goirigolzarri said apotential mergerbetween the bank and Banco MareNostrum SA could occur in the middle of 2017, subject to theconclusion of an analysis of the operation. A merger could create a combinedentity with total assets of more than €240 billion, Reuters notes.

* MAPFRESA will acquirea 31% stake in PT. Asuransi BinaDana Arta Tbk for €92.3 million, increasing its stake in theIndonesian insurer to 51%. MAPFRE said the transaction completes its entry intothe Indonesian insurance market.

* BancoSantander SA and Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria SA said their main focusis on organic growth but are not closing their doors at acquisitionopportunities in Spain, accordingto Expansión.

* Caixa Geralde Depósitos SA will soon announce a cut in the interest rates forlong-term deposits as a way to compensate the continuing rise in EURIBOR, Jornal de Negócios reports.The change will affect private and company accounts.


Amundi, Poste Italiane lead race for UniCredit's Pioneer: AmundiSA and an Italian consortium led by are considered thefrontrunners to purchase UniCreditSpA's asset management business Pioneer after submitting thehighest nonbinding offers last month, insiders tellReuters. Aberdeen AssetManagement Plc and Australia-based are alsointerested in Pioneer and are carrying out due diligence, while was given a chance toimprove its offer.

* CEO Marco Morelli is planning to renegotiate commissions for advisers JPMorganand Mediobanca and could seek to significantly reduce the fixed component whileintroducing a success fee, MF writes.  Meanwhile, securities regulator Consobextended a ban on short-selling of Monte dei Paschi shares, in effect sinceJuly 7, until Jan. 5, 2017, Reuters reports.

* Bank of Italy Director GeneralSalvatore Rossi says the central bank sees alternatives to liquidation shouldthe planned sale of four banks bailed out last year fall through, accordingto Reuters. Unione di BancheItaliane SpA remains interested in the possible acquisition ofthree of the four lenders but only at certain conditions, Il Sole 24 Ore writes, adding that work iscontinuing on a backup plan that could involve selling the banks or specificassets owned by them to investors who expressed interest in a previous biddinground.

* Bank of Italy Director GeneralSalvatore Rossi said mergers between midsized Italian banks should beencouraged to boost profitability in the banking sector, Reuters also reports.

* increased its stake in Cassa diRisparmio di Saluzzo SpA to 80% from 48.98%, MF reports. 


Danish FSA eyeshigher fees on foreign-owned banks: The Danish FSA has proposed a new billthat would require local subsidiaries of foreign banks to pay highersupervisory fees, FinansWatch reports.A local subsidiary of a foreign bank currently pays between 15% and 20% insupervisory fees, but the FSA wants to raise the rates to 50% for foreign banksin Denmark and 80% for systemically important banks.

* Danske BankA/S, Jyske BankA/S and SydbankA/S pledged to improve their lending policies after being stronglycriticized by the Danish FSA, FinansWatch writes.After an inspection, the FSA concluded that Denmark's largest banks do not meettheir own policies when funding housing in large cosmopolitan areas. 

* is facing flak frominvestors saying it was overvalued at $4.5 billion in an IPO last month,Bloomberg News reports.


Polish FSA extendsdeadline for Polbank sale, demerger: The Polish FSA extended deadlinesregarding the demerger and sale of Raiffeisen Bank Polska SA, PAP reports.The lender has until November-end to work out the conditions of the divisionand sale, while the demerger itself should be completed by the end of June2017. The FSA also expects Raiffeisen Bank International AG to notify the ECB bythe end of October about an intention to open a branch in Poland that will takeover the Polish unit's demerged business consisting of foreign-exchangemortgage loans.

* The Polish FSA classified , , , , , , ,Bank BGZ BNP ParibasSA, Polbank and GetinNoble Bank SA as other systemically important institutions andimposed certain capital buffers on the lenders based on their risk exposure,PAP reports.

* RBI decided to gradually shut its online lender Zuno Bank,operating in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, Hospodarske Noviny reports.Zuno Bank's clients will be taken over by Czech-based and Slovakia-basedTatra banka a.s. bythe end of the first half of 2017.

* Getin Noble Bank completed the consolidation of its sharesat a ratio of 3:1, Parkiet reports.

* Under the new division of competences within the Russiancentral bank, first deputy head Dmitry Tulin, will oversee banking regulationand supervision as of Oct. 17, while first deputy head Sergey Shvetsov will beresponsible for licensing and financial rehabilitation of banks, Vedomosti reports.

* Vnesheconombank plans to boost the capital of by 75 billionRussian rubles by 2016-end, writes. The transactionwill be carried out through the conversion of the leasing unit's obligations toVEB into equity.

* Türk EkonomiBankasi AS CEO Ümit Leblebici said the Turkish banking sector isexpected to begin normalizing from the fourth quarter after the failed coupattempt in the country in July, FinansGündem reports.

* UniCredit's indirect share of 50% in Koc FinansalHizmetler, the main shareholder in Yapi ve Kredi Bankasi AS, has been convertedinto a direct holding.

* TürkiyeVakiflar Bankasi TAO secured a securitizationloan in denominated in euro and U.S. dollar a total amount of S$890 million.The total amount consists of seven separate tranches.  


Asia-Pacific: Sompo Holdings to acquire Endurance Specialty; India cuts policyrates

Middle East & Africa:Attijariwafa to buy BarclaysEgypt; South Africa's FSB backs new exchange

Latin America: Porto Seguro, AIG Seguros in auto portfolio deal; BNDES shifts focusto clean energy

North America: Wells says loss from Illinois suspension only $50,000, not'millions'

North America Insurance: Hurricane Matthew poses threat to reinsurers; insurer to exit ACAexchange


MergingSpain's Bankia with Mare Nostrum may mean bigger not better: TheSpanish state rescue fund may merge Bankia and Banco Mare Nostrum. Butsynergies may be hard to find.

Stateinfluence hangs over PZU's dividend promise: PZU said its M&Aplans will not affect a pledge to pay out at least half its profit asdividends. But one analyst said the state's desire to make its role felt in thePolish economy brings a measure of unpredictability. 

Leo Magno, Ed Meza, Danielle Rossingh, Esben Svendsen, Beata Fojcik, Thanasis Kakalis, AliKayalar, Heather O'Brian, Brian McCulloch, Praxilla Trabattoni and Mariana Aldano contributedto this report.

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