MarketLine Blog

Posts tagged to Banks

Australia Banking sector under misconduct investigation


Finance is Australia’s biggest industry, and its banks are some of the most profitable in the world. Australia’s “Big Four” – Commonwealth Bank (CBA), ANZ, National Australia Bank (NAB) and Westpac – collectively hold about 80% of the country’s banking market. Despite its strong position, Australia’s banking and financial services sector has been rocked by a series of scandals over the last decade, with all “Big Four” largest banks being accused of serious misconduct. As a result, a royal commission, Australia’s highest form of public inquiry, has been called to… Read more

Brexit Uncertainty: London’s status as global financial center under threat


London has, for many years, been one of the world’s major financial centers. Some would even argue that it is the world’s financial center. Banks from all over the globe have offices there, many of which take advantage of the EU’s passporting system to sell their services across the Union.  However, as the threat of a rough (or no) trade deal for the UK becomes an increasingly likely prospect, many banks are looking to move their  European headquarters out of the City or at least relocate large numbers of staff… Read more

Another headache for RBS as European Commission probes plan to abandon Williams & Glyn sale


It seems like an eternity since the European Commission (EC) told RBS that it needed to divest of some of its banking operations as a result of receiving state aid in the form of a bailout. The EC argued that it would be unfair to enjoy such a position of power in the UK banking market (particularly in the SME segment) having needed such an injection of government cash. Almost nine years on from receiving that funding, the bank is no closer to any such divestment, having seen three separate… Read more

Toshiba $6.3bn write-down


Originally the board of Toshiba wanted to sell just 19.9% of the semiconductor making business, which was expected to raise $2bn, maybe more. In hanging on to the majority of the business Toshiba would be able to maintain control over the business from which 80% of operating profit is derived. Yet the banks saw the matter differently. Whilst the sale of the majority of the business solves many problems, it creates a fresh set. The more the ‘crown jewels’ of Toshiba are sold off, the harder making a profit becomes…. Read more

China’s banking industry: BIS scaremongering unwarranted but warning signs must be heeded


China’s economic growth has been slowing for a while now and while it remains healthy, there are concerns over the state of the country’s banking industry. Non-performing loan (NPL) rates have been increasing, with some of the country’s biggest banks seeing a surge in that particular metric. Bank of China and ICBC saw noticeable increases in their NPL rates during 2015, necessitating greater allowances for credit losses, while Agricultural Bank saw something of a surge from 1.54% to 2.39%, with the retail and wholesale industry the main cause for concern…. Read more

Williams & Glyn: RBS abandons spin-off IPO plan


To comply with European Commission State Aid requirements, RBS agreed in 2009 to a series of restructuring measures that were to be implemented over a four year period. One of these measures was the divestment of the RBS branch network in England and Wales and the NatWest branches in Scotland. This was scheduled to be completed by 2013, but an extension was granted after the original bidder, Santander, pulled out. A consortium known as Corsair stepped into the breach and invested, facilitating a later sale or, more likely, an IPO…. Read more

Williams & Glyn: Future of RBS spin-off in doubt as launch delayed


Overly ambitious growth strategies initially brought great success for RBS and the company was seen as the darling of the stock market, consistently delivering double digit growth. However, the company swelled to such a size that its assets were twice the size of the UK economy and a woefully ill-advised acquisition of ABN Amro in 2007 as part of a consortium tipped the bank over the edge as it took ownership of a large amount of toxic assets. The weakness was ruthlessly exposed during the global crash of 2008/2009 and… Read more

Barclays Announces 3,700 Job Cuts & a Plunge in Pre-Tax Profits


Barclays was today the first of the UK’s big four banking groups to announce its 2012 results and they did not make for pretty reading, at least at first glance. The headline grabbing figure was £246m ($394.5m) which represented the bank’s statutory profit before tax. This is a huge fall from the £5.9bn ($9.5bn) seen in 2011, due in the main to compensation for mis-sold products and a loss on the value of its own debt. There was also the not-so-insignificant matter of a £290m ($465.1m) for its role in… Read more

Chinese Banks Are Growing Their Footprints Overseas

  The Chinese banking sector has grown strongly in recent years, with the likes of Bank of China and Agricultural Bank of China both expanding their operations to become leading players in the Asia-Pacific market. Having now established themselves domestically, these banks are now looking to branch out and open representative offices overseas. In fact, if Chinese banks go on to become major forces internationally, 2012 may come to be seen as something of a watershed year for the country’s financial services industry as it has so far seen a… Read more

Bob Diamond resigns as Barclays CEO, but the end of the LIBOR scandal is nowhere in sight

  Bob diamond yesterday resigned from his position as CEO of Barclays after being implicated in the LIBOR rate fixing scandal. In banking circles, Bob Diamond has long been considered something of a genius. After forging a reputation as a ruthless profit generator at Morgan Stanley and then CS First Boston, Diamond joined British bank Barclays as Head of Global Markets.  He was then made CEO of the bank’s newly established investment banking arm, Barclays Capital in 1997. Under Diamond, Barclays Capital became one of banking’s great success stories. It… Read more