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BTMU, Mizuho to join international payment system; ClearView eyes Asian buyer

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BTMU, Mizuho to join international payment system; ClearView eyes Asian buyer

*Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJLtd. and Mizuho BankLtd. will participate in the China International Payments System,which is aimed at streamliningthe process of cross-border yuan transactions, Tokyo's The Nikkei reported.

*Simon Swanson, co-founder and managing director of , said theAustralian company is looking to midmarket insurers and wealth managers ofJapan, South Korea and China for a foreign buyer to facilitate the exit ofClearView Wealth's dominant private equity owner Crescent Capital Partners, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.ClearView will raise A$50 million from existing shareholders to support itsgrowth.

*Yuanta Securities Co.Ltd. is seeking correction of an "inaccuracy" carriedin a U.S. Department of Justice statement and other media outlets that thesecurities firm had bribed NT$200 million to former Taiwanese First Lady WuShu-Jen in 2004 during former President Chen Shui-Bian's administration to makesure the government did not oppose its acquisition of a financial holding firm.

*Banco de Chile hasdissolved its Hong Kong-based subsidiary Banchile Trade Services Ltd., whichwas involved in supporting foreign trade in Asian markets, the bank .

*Arvind Panagariya, vice chairman of the National Institution for TransformingIndia Aayog, can potentially be appointed by Indian Prime Minister NarendraModi as the new governor of the Reserve Bank of India, Reuters reported,citing unnamed government sources. Raghuram Rajan, who will not seekreappointment as central bank governor, ends his term in September.

GREATER CHINA

*J.P. Morgan said that sales of panda bonds, yuan-denominated debt sold in Chinaby foreign firms or governments, stood at 29 billion yuan so far in 2016, morethan twice what was raised in 2015, Caixinreported.Data showed that 65% of panda bond issuers are companies, most of which areChinese firms registered in overseas countries. Meanwhile, J.P. Morgan saidthat the volume of dim sum bonds — yuan bonds sold offshore — plunged to 49billion yuan in the five months ended May.

*Citigroup Inc. expects that China will cut reserve requirement ratios threetimes in the remaining months of 2016, with 50 basis points each, Reuters reported.Citigroup said China's economic growth would continue to slow in the secondhalf as it faces capital outflow pressures, although the yuan will notdepreciate by a large margin.

*The China Banking Association said the revenues of Chinese commercial banks'intermediary business are expected to continue increasing in 2016 and that therapid development of banks' retail business and financial market business willhelp support their growth, the ChinaSecurities Journal reported.

*The People's Bank of China said that the total assets of the country'scommercial banks increased 22.7% year over year to 22.5 trillion yuan as of theend of 2015, Beijing Business Today reported. Thegrowth rate was 10.1 percentage points higher than the banking sector's averagegrowth rate.

*Bank of East AsiaLtd. is facing an ongoing probe over its anti-money launderingcontrols following bank transactions leaked by local media, South China Morning Post reported.The Hong Kong-based bank was allegedly used as a conduit to disburse 70 millionyuan to senior executives at Evergrowing Bank Co. Ltd. in Shandong,China.

JAPAN AND KOREA

*Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda reportedly met with former U.S. FederalReserve Chairman Ben Bernanke over lunch July 11, ahead of the Japanese centralbank's scheduled policy meeting July 28 to July 29, Bloomberg News reported.The central bank issued no statement on the substance of the talks.

*Sumitomo Mitsui Trust BankLtd. will conduct a joint research project with Escrow Agent Japan,a local financial services consultancy, to develop a fintech system, The Nikkei reported.

*The Bank of Korea is expected to keep its policy rate unchanged in July,according to a survey of 12 economists by Yonhap Infomax, Yonhap News Agency reported. TheSouth Korean central bank's monthly rate-setting meeting is scheduled July 14.

* SouthKorea's Financial Services Commission will develop guidelines for peer-to-peerlending to protect consumers, The ChosunIlbo reported.

*South Korea's National Pension Service shortlisted and aspotential hedge fund managers, Yonhap News Agency reported.

*KB Financial GroupInc. will merge its brokerage unit with inNovember at the earliest under KB Securities, Yonhap News Agency reported.

*NH Investment & SecuritiesCo. Ltd. will acquire a 56-story office building, currently underconstruction in Seoul, for about 700 billion won, Yonhap News Agency reported.

ASEAN

*Thai Finance Minister Apisak Tantivorawong affirmed that the PromptPay system issafe and does not breach the privacy of its users, Thailand's Manager Daily reported.

*Thailand's National Credit Bureau sent letters to about 150 savings cooperativesnationwide that have more than 5,000 members, urging them to join the country'scredit bureau system, Daily News reported. So far, 133savings cooperatives responded by requesting more details while six savingscooperatives have applied for membership with the credit bureau system.

*The Thai General Insurance Association said 16 insurance companies haveexpressed their intent to provide insurance coverage for rice paddies for the2016-2017 planting season, Thailand's PostToday reported.

*Indonesia's Infobank reportedthat Bank Indonesia estimated a 4.94% economic growth in the second quarter,slightly higher than 4.92% in the first quarter.

* BIGovernor Agus Martowardojo said the inflow of foreign funds reached 97 trillionrupiah so far in 2016, up from 57 trillion rupiah in the prior-year period, Bisnis Indonesia reported.

*Indonesia's Central Statistics Agency expected the tax amnesty program toincrease banking liquidity, lower interest rates and boost consumption, whichmay lead to higher inflation at the end of 2016, The Jakarta Post reported.

*Standard Chartered Bank forecasts that Bank Negara Malaysia will keep itsovernight policy rate unchanged at 3.25%, saying that the outlook for externaland domestic growth is poor, Malaysia's NewStraits Times reported.

*RHB Islamic Bank Bhd.intends to become one of three major Islamic banking institutions in Malaysiawith the appointment of Adissadikin Ali as managing director and CEO, effectiveAug. 1, Utusan Malaysia reported.

*The Monetary Authority of Singapore urged banks to learn from a rare robberyinvolving S$30,000 stolen at a Standard Chartered Plc branch, Reuters reported,citing "a source with knowledge of the matter."

*The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas said the Philippines' foreign direct inflowssurged 184% to US$3.49 billion in the first quarter from US$1.23 billion in theprior-year period due to a sharp increase in investor confidence in the economyon the back of sound macroeconomic fundamentals, The Philippine Star reported.

SOUTH ASIA

*Canara Bank'savailable-for-sale portfolio has improved to 4.45% as of March, from 3.58% inthe previous year, The Hindu BusinessLine reported.The increase was due to allotment of special state loans worth 85.81 billionIndian rupees under the government's Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana scheme, thebank said.

*Housing Development Finance Corp.Ltd. will raise around 30 billion rupees through an issuance of thefirst synthetic Indian rupee notes to offshore investors, The Hindu Business Line reported.

*Edelweiss Financial ServicesLtd. said the Insurance Regulatory & Development Authority ofIndia accepted its registration application to set up a general insurance unit,India's Business Standard reported.The wholly owned subsidiary will be named Edelweiss General Insurance.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

*AustralianSuper CEO Ian Silk said the double-digit investment returns thatAustralian investors and superannuation fund members had enjoyed in previousyears would not be repeated, amid lower inflation and interest rates and worldmarket volatility, The Australian reported.

*The number of ATM units in Australia declined for two consecutive quarters to31,522 ATMs in March from more than 32,000 units in September 2015, due toclients who have switched to using digital transactions, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

*National Australia BankLtd. cut fixed interest rates for various owner-occupied home loansacross one-, two-, three- and four-year terms to below 4%, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

MiddleEast & Africa: Ivorian bank'sstake sale; Mozambique's downgrade

Europe:€150B EU bank rescue programproposed; BoE rate cut likely; Deutsche Börse, LSE move for merger

LatinAmerica: BM&FBOVESPA upsstake in Santiago stock exchange

NorthAmerica: Thomson Reuters sellingintellectual property, science biz for $3.55B; First Hawaiian registers forIPO

NorthAmerica Insurance: Oregon healthinsurance co-op folds; Aetna, DOJ officials talk Humana deal

Sally Wang, Jonathan Cheah,Jaekwon Lim and Santibhap Ussavasodhi contributed to this report.

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