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May 15, 2012

Japanese banks report profit rise, see tougher year

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s big banks reported a rise in annual profits on Tuesday, helped by a stock market rally and lower credit costs, but forecast a tougher year ahead, putting further pressure on their overseas drive to fill the gap.

The big three lenders – Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) (8306.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Mizuho Financial Group (8411.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG) (8316.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) – are not expected to see the hefty bond trading gains and very low bad loans booked that have boosted profits in recent years.

May 14, 2012

Japan mega banks face tough year as JGB gravy train slows

TOKYO, May 15 (Reuters) – Japan’s top banks are set for
profit declines this year after solid growth in the past two
years as razor-thin yields curb their hefty government-bond
trading gains and as a tepid domestic economy curtails loan
appetite.

The top three lenders – Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group
(MUFG), Mizuho Financial Group and Sumitomo
Mitsui Financial Group (SMFG) – hold about $1.25
trillion worth of Japanese government bonds (JGBs) on their
books, which, if interest rates rise, could spur huge losses.

Apr 26, 2012

MUFG core unit may spend 1 trillion yen on assets

TOKYO (Reuters) – The core banking unit of Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) (8306.T: Quote, Profile, Research), Japan’s biggest lender by assets, may spend over 1 trillion yen (7.5 billion pounds) in the next three years on overseas acquisitions to diversify from a slowing domestic market, a senior executive said.

Japanese banks are under pressure to tap overseas markets to counter sluggish loan demand and consumer spending in the world’s third-largest economy.

Apr 12, 2012

Japan MS&AD paying $530 mln for NY Life’s India JV stake

TOKYO/HONG KONG (Reuters) – Japan’s MS&AD (8725.T: Quote, Profile, Research) is acquiring New York Life’s 26 percent stake in a joint venture with Max India (MAXI.NS: Quote, Profile, Research) for about $530 million, in another example of Japanese companies’ growing appetite for overseas assets.

MS&AD Insurance Group, Japan’s largest property-casualty insurer by revenue, is among the industry’s most aggressive in expanding in Asia through acquisitions, buying both life and non-life assets to secure growth beyond its weak home market.

Apr 12, 2012

Japan MS&AD buying NY Life’s India JV stake for $540 mln – sources

TOKYO/HONG KONG (Reuters) – Japan’s MS&AD (8725.T: Quote, Profile, Research) is set to buy New York Life’s 26 percent stake in a joint venture with Max India (MAXI.NS: Quote, Profile, Research) for about $540 million, two sources said on Thursday, signaling the continued appetite of Japanese companies for overseas assets.

MS&AD Insurance Group, Japan’s largest property-casualty insurer by revenue, is among the industry’s most aggressive in expanding in Asia through acquisitions, buying both life and non-life assets to secure growth beyond the weak home market.

Apr 12, 2012

Japan’s MS&AD close to buying 26 pct of India life JV-source

TOKYO, April 12 (Reuters) – Japan’s MS&AD is close
to buying a 26 percent stake in an Indian joint venture between
New York Life and Max India for about $540
million, a source said on Thursday, signaling continued appetite
of Japanese insurers for overseas acquisitions despite large
Thai flood losses.

MS&AD Insurance Group, Japan’s largest property-casualty
insurer by revenue, is among the industry’s most aggressive in
expanding in Asia through acquisitions, buying both life and
non-life assets to secure growth beyond weak home market.

Apr 1, 2012

Japan bank lobby head: Lenders see chances overseas

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s lenders are seeing opportunities to grow abroad thanks to the solid health of its financial system while overseas rivals struggle, the new head of the nation’s banking industry lobby said.

Yasuhiro Sato, who became chairman of the Japanese Bankers Association on Sunday, said such a trend is especially pronounced in Asia, where European rivals are reducing lending to protect their capital and ride out a financial storm at home.

Mar 30, 2012

MUFG bank unit head: want to make more U.S. acquisitions

TOKYO, March 31 (Reuters) – Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group
(8306.T: Quote, Profile, Research) plans to make more acquisitions in the United States as
Japan’s largest lender looks to ramp up its business overseas,
the new head of its core banking unit said.

Nobuyuki Hirano, who becomes president of Bank of
Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ on Sunday, also wants to beef up
currency-related sales and trading in emerging markets in Asia
as part of a drive to attract non-Japanese clients.

Mar 29, 2012

Fukushima operator Tepco seeks $12 billion government rescue

TOKYO (Reuters) – Tokyo Electric Power Co (9501.T: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has asked the government for an injection of 1 trillion yen ($12 billion) in what would be Japan’s biggest public bailout outside the banking sector, as it struggles with the aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear crisis.

The utility, widely known as Tepco, said on Thursday it had also sought 845.9 billion yen from a government-backed bailout body to help compensate victims of the tsunami-triggered accident – the world’s worst nuclear disaster in 25 years.

Mar 29, 2012

Fukushima operator Tepco seeks $12 bln govt rescue

TOKYO, March 29 (Reuters) – Tokyo Electric Power Co
has asked the government for an injection of 1 trillion yen ($12
billion) in what would be Japan’s biggest public bailout outside
the banking sector, as it struggles with the aftermath of the
Fukushima nuclear crisis.

The utility, widely known as Tepco, said on Thursday it had
also sought 845.9 billion yen from a government-backed bailout
body to help compensate victims of the tsunami-triggered
accident – the world’s worst nuclear disaster in 25 years.