European banking correspondent
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Feb 5, 2015

Alpari fails to find buyers, 114 jobs go

LONDON, Feb 5 (Reuters) – The administrators for foreign
exchange broker Alpari UK have been unable to sell the business
after the company was crippled by losses caused by Switzerland’s
removal of its cap on the Swiss franc.

The joint administrators from KPMG said on Thursday they had
sold the firm’s intellectual property assets, including the
Alpari trademark, to co-founder and main shareholder Andrey
Dashin.

Feb 4, 2015

No default on Indonesia’s Tan $1 bln loan from StanChart, banks -exec

LONDON, Feb 4 (Reuters) – Indonesian businessman Samin Tan
has repaid $200 million of a $1 billion loan to Standard
Chartered and Raiffeisen and has not defaulted
on any of the debt, one of the executives at his company said.

A $1 billion loan by Standard Chartered to Borneo Lumbung
Energi & Metal, an Indonesian coal mining company
controlled by Tan, has become a headache for the bank because
Tan’s businesses have been hit by falling coal prices.

Feb 4, 2015

UK traders should pass exam, bank lobby group says

LONDON, Feb 4 (Reuters) – Thousands of bond, currency and
commodities traders in London should have to pass an exam and
obtain a new qualification to trade as part of attempts to raise
standards, Britain’s bank lobby group said on Wednesday.

The British Bankers’ Association (BBA) said a “licence to
trade” qualification and tougher codes of conduct should be
introduced to strengthen trust in financial markets after a
series of damaging scandals.

Jan 29, 2015

Standard Chartered board to discuss CEO succession at meeting -sources

LONDON, Jan 29 (Reuters) – Standard Chartered’s
board will discuss succession planning at a meeting in
Washington, D.C., on Thursday, people familiar with the matter
said.

The meeting is a regularly scheduled meeting, the bank said,
declining to discuss further details, or the agenda.

Jan 20, 2015

Overseas bank lending to Russia, Ukraine slid in July-Sept – BIS

LONDON, Jan 20 (Reuters) – Lending to Russia by overseas
banks slumped by $11 billion between July and September last
year and lending to Ukraine fell by $2.3 billion as political
and economic tension in the region increased, lending data
showed.

International banks reduced their lending to Russia in the
year to the end of September by $46 billion, or 19 percent, to
$196 billion, after risk-based adjustments, according to data
released on Tuesday by the Bank for International Settlements.
The BIS data track cross-border lending by banks.

Jan 17, 2015

Swiss franc shock shuts some FX brokers; regulators move in

LONDON (Reuters) – The Swiss franc shock reverberated through currency trading firms around the world on Friday, wiping out many small-scale investors and the brokerages that cater to them and forcing regulators to take a closer look at the sector.

Some major banks also lost out when the Swiss National Bank scrapped its three-year-old cap on the franc against the euro EURCHF=EBS without warning on Thursday, including Britain’s Barclays (BARC.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) which lost “tens of millions” of dollars, an industry source said.

Jan 16, 2015

U.S. bank results signal bonus dip for London and New York bankers

LONDON (Reuters) – London and Wall Street bankers look set to get slightly lower bonuses for 2014 than the year before, based on pay details released this week by big U.S. banks and expectations in the industry.

Goldman Sachs said on Friday its staff were paid $12.69 billion in compensation and benefits for 2014, up 0.6 percent on 2013. That equated to an average of $373,000 for its 34,000 employees, down 2.6 percent after it added staff in the year.

Jan 16, 2015

UK banks tell nine trade groups they should merge

LONDON (Reuters) – Banks told nine trade associations in Britain on Friday they should merge into a single body to strengthen lobbying in Europe and slash membership costs.

A working group of banks that includes HSBC, Barclays and Lloyds said in a consultation paper there are too many trade groups, leading to duplication of lobbying and a lack of strategic direction.

Jan 15, 2015

Swiss banks hammered as earnings face hit from currency surge

LONDON (Reuters) – Shares in Switzerland’s two big banks UBS and Credit Suisse slumped as much as 15 percent on Thursday after a massive strengthening in the Swiss franc raised the threat that reported earnings will be hit hard.

The Swiss National Bank (SNB) shocked financial markets by scrapping a three-year-old cap on the franc, sending it soaring nearly 30 percent against the euro. The SNB also cut interest rates, which were already negative, to minus 0.75 percent.

Jan 12, 2015

StanChart faces $4.4 bln commodities hit, may need to raise cash -analysts

LONDON, Jan 12 (Reuters) – Asia-focused bank Standard
Chartered could need $4.4 billion of extra provisions
to cover losses from commodities loans, potentially forcing it
to raise billions of dollars from investors, analysts said on
Monday.

Credit Suisse analysts said the losses could force Standard
Chartered to raise $6.9 billion to improve its core capital
ratio to 11 percent by the end of the year.

    • About Steve

      "Responsible for overseeing coverage of the European bank sector and direct coverage of the international UK-based banks, based in London. Have been in current role for three years, and for previous three years was UK banking reporter. Have over 15 years experience as a financial newswire journalist in London and New York."
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