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China investors to buy Kazakh bank stake; Reliance unit eyes stake sale via IPO

* China CITIC Bank Corp. Ltd. and China Shuangwei Investment Co. Ltd. will acquire a 60% stake in Kazakhstan's JSC Altyn Bank from JSC Halyk Savings Bank of Kazakhstan. The transaction is expected to be completed in the second half.

* Reliance Capital Ltd. unit Reliance Nippon Life Asset Management Ltd. is looking to divest at least a 10% stake through an IPO in fiscal 2017-18, with plans to sell an additional 15% stake in the next three years, Reuters reported, citing CEO Sundeep Sikka. The company's board has approved the listing, subject to regulatory and corporate approvals.

* Everbright Securities Co. Ltd. unit Sun Hung Kai Financial acquired U.K.-based specialist brokerage and research firm North Square Blue Oak Ltd. in a move that expands the company's business to the European markets. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

GREATER CHINA

* The Chinese government said the country's 100 billion yuan internet investment fund has raised an initial 30 billion yuan, the People's Daily reported. The government invested 2 billion yuan in the fund as a guiding capital, while the remaining 28 billion yuan was raised from strategic investors.

* Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing Ltd. and China Foreign Exchange Trade System established a joined venture company in Hong Kong named Bond Connect Co. Ltd. to aid bond connect-related trading services. CFETS holds a 60% stake in the joint venture, while HKEX owns the remaining 40%.

* Minghua Jeng, chairman of First Financial Asset Management Co. Ltd., was named the chairman of Taiwan Asset Management Corp., the island's Central News Agency reported.

* Taiwan's Bank SinoPac Co. Ltd. has rolled out an improved online mortgage system that enables clients to modify their monthly mortgage payments online, the Taipei Times reported.

JAPAN AND KOREA

* According to data from the Japanese Bankers Association, the amount of real deposits in the country increased by 4% year over year to ¥715 trillion as of the end of May, Tokyo's The Nikkei reported.

* South Korea's Financial Supervisory Service has collaborated with the country's credit rating companies, including the Korea Credit Bureau and NICE Group, to develop educational materials for underprivileged South Korean citizens, the Chosun Ilbo reported.

* Citibank Korea Inc., which has decided to shutter 80% of its branches, saw more than 8,700 account holders switch to services offered by competing commercial banks in South Korea with an outflow of balances totaling 447 billion won, The Financial News reported.

ASEAN

* KASIKORNBANK PCL unveiled its wholly owned investment arm, Beacon Venture Capital Co. Ltd., aimed at investing in fintech firms, Manager Daily reported, citing President Kattiya Indaravijaya. The firm plans to use its initial investment fund of 1 billion baht to invest in up to five startups and up to three venture capital funds in the current fiscal year.

* Viriyah Insurance PCL posted a gross premium income of 10 billion baht, up 7% year over year, for the quarter ended April 30, Post Today reported. The growth rate exceeded the firm's previous forecast of 3%.

* State lender PT Bank Negara Indonesia (Persero) Tbk plans to issue 10 trillion Indonesian rupiah of continuous bonds, Bisnis Indonesia reported, citing Deputy CEO Herry Sidharta.

SOUTH ASIA

* The Reserve Bank of India's monetary policy committee decided to keep the bank's policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility unchanged at 6.25%. The reverse repo rate will remain at 6.0%, and the marginal standing facility rate and the bank rate will be unchanged at 6.50%.

* India's Power Finance Corp. Ltd. is set to raise 700 billion rupees worth of debt in fiscal 2017-18 through various modes, including external commercial bonds and rupee-denominated masala bonds, among others, The Economic Times reported, citing Chairman and Managing Director Rajeev Sharma.

* ECL Finance Ltd., a nonbanking finance company unit of India's Edelweiss Financial Services Ltd., has issued unsecured nonconvertible bonds worth up to 3 billion rupees on a private placement basis. The subordinated perpetual bonds bear an annual coupon of 10.25%.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

* Australia has now equaled the world record for uninterrupted economic expansion, with 103 consecutive quarters of growth, after GDP added 0.3% in the first quarter over the previous three-month period, in line with economists' expectations, Australian Bureau of Statistics data showed.

* Westpac Banking Corp. unit St. George Bank is taking legal action against Glenn Rosewall, former executive chairman of collapsed stockbroker BBY Ltd., for allegedly breaching an agreement to guarantee a loan to the firm, The Sydney Morning Herald reported. The bank said Rosewall was liable for A$9.3 million, which had continued to accrue interest.

* Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. will spend at least NZ$2 million compensating some 51,000 customers who were financially affected by "processing errors" dating back to 2009, Stuff.co.nz reported. The customers were not able to receive full member tax credits, which are contributions from the New Zealand government to lure customers into KiwiSaver.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

Middle East & Africa: Saudi, UAE banks halt dealings with Qatari peers; South Africa in recession

Europe: Santander acquiring Banco Popular; RBS settles cash call claims

Latin America: Temer said to retaliate against J&F; court decision won't impact Banorte result

North America: Cordray faces possible contempt charges; JPMorgan applies to delist from LSE

North America Insurance: Senate GOP divided on Medicaid; UnitedHealth ups dividend

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

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