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Dispatches: ICBC buys US brokerage

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the world’s biggest lender by market value, paid a token US$1 for a small US brokerage, the Wall Street Journal reported yesterday, citing people familiar with the matter. Beijing-based ICBC is buying the Prime Dealer Services unit of Fortis Securities from BNP Paribas SA, allowing France’s biggest-listed bank to dispose of the last remaining business unit of Fortis Securities for little or no cost, the journal said. (Shanghai Daily)

Fubon Financial and the Capital Group became the first Taiwan institutions allowed to invest in mainland China’s capital markets, the official Shanghai Securities News reported on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Just a week after its launch, the Singapore Exchange’s $8.3bn takeover offer for the Australian Stock Exchange is looking increasingly unlikely to be consummated, amid rising nationalist sentiment in Australia. As the two exchanges ponder the bleak prospect of months of regulatory debate followed by rejection, supporters of exchange consolidation are consoling themselves with the reflection that the bid has at least put the issue on the table. (Financial Times)

Clinton Dines will establish an Asian investment fund worth $500m for Australian investors to access the booming Chinese market. The former BHP Billiton China president’s vehicle is Caledonia Investments. (The Australian)

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