April 2016

April 2016

The big wobble: Can the SSM stabilize Europe's banking system?

Euromoney April 2016

The Single Supervisory Mechanism, the eurozone’s new banking supervisor, is tasked with combating financial fragmentation, building a banking union and, above all, making Europe’s banks investable once again. The first few months of its tenure were some of the most difficult since the dark days of the euro crisis. Bankers’ scepticism about the new regime is the least of their worries.

Markets

Capital markets: Swap spreads signal market failure

Capital markets: Swap spreads signal market failure

Euromoney March 2016 euromoney.com

Negative swap spreads are more than a sign of dysfunction in the interest-rate derivatives market. They are the result of fundamental changes in the structure of the capital markets that have been forced by post-crisis banking regulation.


Banking

Natixis: Pérol and Mignon put growth back on the menu

Natixis: Pérol and Mignon put growth back on the menu

Euromoney March 2016 euromoney.com

François Pérol has overseen an extraordinary shift at Natixis and its parent, BPCE. International wholesale banking and asset management are among BPCE’s proudest boasts and biggest hopes. Will its complex recipe of mutual lender, structured finance shop, boutique advisory and insurance leave a bitter taste?


Natixis: Natural selection in eurozone banks

Euromoney April 2016

Could BPCE replicate its growth in investment banking and asset management and make international acquisitions in retail banking too?

Western Europe

Western Europe: Zalm considers the scale of ABN Amro’s ambition

Western Europe: Zalm considers the scale of ABN Amro’s ambition

Euromoney April 2016

ABN Amro has risen again. Under executive chairman Gerrit Zalm, the bank has been remodelled almost beyond recognition. Its capital and profitability are restored, and, as the Dutch mortgage market shrinks, Zalm sees its best chances for growth in the international arena.


ABN Amro: Prestige role – how the Dutch privatize banks

Euromoney April 2016

A key player in ABN Amro’s IPO last year was the entity set up to hold and sell bailed-out Dutch banks and insurers, Netherlands Financial Investments (NLFI).

Markets

Equity markets: When rights go wrong

Equity markets: When rights go wrong

Euromoney April 2016

Recent deals from Lonmin and Saipem demonstrate that in current markets even one of the more straightforward types of capital raising, rights issues, can struggle. Is the model broken, or is this troubling evidence of just how risk-averse underwriters have become?


Debate

Sri Lanka debate: Sri Lanka looks to a brighter future

Sri Lanka debate: Sri Lanka looks to a brighter future

Euromoney April 2016

With a can-do attitude, the island nation is working hard to move up the league tables by improving domestic conditions for business and inward investment and prompting its international ambitions by signing free-trade agreements with its neighbours.


Bangladesh debate: Bangladesh gears up for growth

Euromoney April 2016

The country faces many challenges as it prepares to make itself the global growth leader of tomorrow, not least in infrastructure, capital-market development and up-skilling its workforce. Part of the solution is to make itself more attractive to foreign investors.

Asia

Asia: China's moment of truth

Asia: China's moment of truth

Euromoney April 2016

China has a future rich with potential: a liberalized currency, an open capital account, state lenders and technology giants offering innovative banking services to a vibrant private sector. But Beijing’s leaders face a growing problem: a two-speed China. Now is not the time for them to drag their feet over reform.


Citi plots next stage of development in Asia

Euromoney April 2016

Citi’s Asia-Pacific business is the ultimate test of its universal banking model. New regional CEO Francisco Aristeguieta knows he needs to build on its strong component parts, not just to maintain its position in Asia, but to push the bank forward globally.

Fintech

Fintech 2016: The fintech revolution gathers momentum

Fintech 2016: The fintech revolution gathers momentum

Euromoney March 2016 euromoney.com

After a record year for fund raising, large fintech companies are now emerging in marketplace lending and payments, with many more newcomers deploying venture capital money raised in $25 million to $50 million chunks to transform capital markets and traditional banking mainstays such as mortgage lending. The fintech start-ups are building revolutionary applications for blockchain, attacking every specialist niche in the financial world and keeping the image of fintech clean with business ventures aimed at inclusion.


Fintech 2016: Origin builds a new utility for private placements

Euromoney April 2016

Fintech inevitably leads the search for greater efficiency and transparency to the most fiercely guarded corner of banks’ turf: the new-issue business.

Fintech 2016: Applying the blockchain

Euromoney April 2016

Starting by transforming the workflows around invoices, Applied Blockchain is developing practical uses for shared ledger technology on private networks.

Fintech 2016: LendInvest has big ambitions

Euromoney April 2016

Two large fund-raising rounds have equipped the property-focused marketplace lender to grow into a mainstream mortgage provider.

Fintech 2016: Finpoint connects small firms to many lenders

Euromoney April 2016

While credit conditions appear to be easing for medium-size borrowers, small companies face big hurdles in securing finance. Finpoint aims to help them over.

Fintech 2016: EdAid brings impact investing to student loans

Euromoney April 2016

As worries mount that large volumes of student debt extended in developed markets will never be repaid, EdAid seeks a new model for student loans and new lenders.

Middle East

Middle East: Saudi banks dig deep for debt as liquidity runs dry

Middle East: Saudi banks dig deep for debt as liquidity runs dry

Euromoney April 2016

A liquidity crunch is affecting banks worldwide and Saudi Arabia is no exception. Deposits are falling as the government pulls out cash to fund the deficit, yet lending continues to grow. Will the banks change their lending models or turn to the capital markets for funding?


Africa

Africa: Njoroge stresses need for Kenya banks to innovate

Africa: Njoroge stresses need for Kenya banks to innovate

Euromoney April 2016

After 20 years at the IMF, Patrick Njoroge gave up life in Washington for the rough and tumble of public life in Kenya. It was a culture shock for the new central bank governor. Now his robust approach is proving to be a shock to the Kenyan system.


Kenya central bank governor Njoroge: Calling it as he sees it

Euromoney April 2016

Patrick Njoroge has spent much of his career outside Kenya, mostly in Washington at the IMF as a senior economist. Two decades in that role took him around the world, occasionally as its ambassador, more often in a team of firemen fixing damaged economies.

Transaction services

Treasurers join the M&A starting blocks

Treasurers join the M&A starting blocks

Euromoney March 2016 euromoney.com

Having a complete view of a company’s financial position is giving corporate treasurers a greater role in the M&A process. From raising the initial financing to managing the new payroll structure, companies are finding the earlier their treasurers become involved, the better.


Latin America

Latin America: Reit turn ahead?

Latin America: Reit turn ahead?

Euromoney April 2016

Latin America’s real-estate investment trust market has stalled in the face of a general pullback in emerging market investing. In the longer term, however, this could be the shock that spurs on a sector held back by asset size and asset scarcity.


Banking news

Western Europe: Anti-terror push piles on compliance burden

Western Europe: Anti-terror push piles on compliance burden

Euromoney April 2016

France leads new European AML push; tech payments firms most vulnerable.


Europe’s student loan market turns to non-banks

Euromoney April 2016

Future Finance plans European expansion; more non-bank student lenders expected.

Markets news

Fixed income: ESMA heads back to the drawing board

Fixed income: ESMA heads back to the drawing board

Euromoney April 2016

EC demands rethink on Mifid II transparency; end investors criticise focus on liquidity.


Housing finance: Yield hunters storm Dutch mortgage market

Euromoney April 2016

Banks off load loans as securitization stalls; start-ups and insurers compete.

Energy: PE weighs risks as banks shun oil and gas

Euromoney April 2016

Private equity firms quick to exploit oil sector distress; end investors remain cautious.

Volatile markets dampen US leveraged buyouts

Euromoney April 2016

Buyouts slump to lowest level since 2003; concern grows over forward pipeline.

Asia news

Asia: Cyber-heist topples Bangladesh bank chief

Asia: Cyber-heist topples Bangladesh bank chief

Euromoney April 2016

$101 million stolen by cyber-thieves; fears of an inside job.


China: Corporates face toxic threat of debt

Euromoney April 2016

Corporate debt at record high; NPLs at state lenders also on rise.

Regulation: Banking’s dark side reaches Australia

Euromoney April 2016

Asic launches investigations; ANZ, Macquarie and CBA probed.

Latin America news

Brazil: Disposals help BTG Pactual pass liquidity test

Brazil: Disposals help BTG Pactual pass liquidity test

Euromoney April 2016

Shores up confidence; retains minority Swiss bank stake.


Brazilian issuers eye securitization funding

Euromoney April 2016

Cheapest access to dollars: politics helps mask economic realities.

Sovereign debt: Uruguay juggles cheap yields and regional flux

Euromoney April 2016

Plans to pre-fund 2017 in second quarter; Brazil and Argentina imperil growth and investment.

EEMEA news

Middle East: Scale of Gulf-wide credit crunch comes clear

Middle East: Scale of Gulf-wide credit crunch comes clear

Euromoney April 2016

$94 billion coming due by end-2017; Bahrain pays up after downgrade.


Barclays Africa eyes growth despite group sale

Euromoney April 2016

CEO to press on with pan-African investment; PLC exit comes as African business turns round.

Emerging Europe: Romania’s new champion steps into i-banking

Euromoney April 2016

Bank snaps up local advisory firm; M&A activity ‘on upward trajectory’, says CEO.

Comment

Western Europe: Negative policy rates backfire

Western Europe: Negative policy rates backfire

Euromoney April 2016

Adair Turner, who famously took over as chairman of UK bank regulator the Financial Services Authority in September 2008, delivered a thoroughly depressing analysis of the slow and disappointing recovery from the financial crisis at the European Capital Markets Forum last month.


Banks' underwriting: Bang to rights

Euromoney April 2016

Two troubled rights issues should remind banks that underwriting is a discipline, not a formality.

Italy banking merger: Beginning or end?

Euromoney April 2016

Mixed regulatory messages cloud the outlook after Italy’s first big bank merger since 2008.

Latin America banking: Packed for good?

Euromoney April 2016

International banks are picking up the suitcase banking habit in Latin America again. They may find it hard to return.

Regulation: Solvency II – insurance companies in for a structural change

Euromoney April 2016

Insurance companies will struggle to fill real asset allocations until the industry gets better at structuring infrastructure risk.

Columns

Macaskill on markets: Thiam loses credit as Credit Suisse stumbles

Macaskill on markets: Thiam loses credit as Credit Suisse stumbles

Euromoney March 2016 euromoney.com

A botched move to take the distressed credit out of Credit Suisse and an ‘acceleration’ of the strategic plan give the impression the bank’s new leader is making it up as he goes along.


Sideways: ECB pixie dust fails to revive credit trading

Euromoney April 2016

The European Central Bank’s announcement that it will extend its debt purchases to corporate bonds has given a boost to the region’s investment banks.

Against the tide: Gold is back

Euromoney April 2016

When the numbers look bleak and central banks are out of tools, cash and gold make sense.

Inside investment: Driving lessons from Greece

Euromoney April 2016

Central bank policy has evolved from unorthodox to downright strange as politicians have failed to take control of the post-crisis economy. Sooner rather later they will confront a stark choice signposted Greece or Ireland.

Panda breath: China fears dislocation, not doomsday

Euromoney April 2016

Polemicists arguing either side of this coin toss abound, from water coolers to Republican primaries. Where once markets drew direction from the pronouncements of Alan Greenspan, they now rise and fall on Chinese numbers. Ironically, no one actually believes the official numbers that China puts out.

Off message: UK and US – the not-so-special special relationship

Euromoney April 2016

Brexit presents a fascinating situation for the financial services community.

Front end

Don’t pan leaving Goldman!

Don’t pan leaving Goldman!

Euromoney April 2016

Since the financial crisis, plenty of former bankers have sought to restart their careers in a completely new environment. But few have taken the change as far as Heidi Golding.


Libya’s Dickens of a muddle

Euromoney April 2016

It is tempting to wonder if the Libyan Investment Authority’s actions against Goldman Sachs and Société Générale could end up going the same way as Jarndyce and Jarndyce.

Diversity double fault for BNP Paribas?

Euromoney April 2016

BNP Paribas takes the issue of diversity in the workplace very seriously. A quick glance at its website tells you as much.

ANZ cashes in on GAYTMs

Euromoney April 2016

February brings with it the cherished annual sight of ANZ coming out in flamboyant fashion ahead of Sydney’s Mardi Gras festival.

Credit Suisse or crime scene?

Euromoney April 2016

Stuck to a phone booth in Zurich.