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Daily Dispatches: new leader for ANZ’s Asian expansion

ANZ has poached senior banker Mark Robinson from Citigroup to lead its south and south-east Asia operations, as it looks to double the proportion of income from the region to 20 per cent. Australia’s third largest bank last night said it had hired Robinson as chief executive of the region, which includes key markets Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, India and Singapore. (The Australian)

The ACCC says there has been no change to its deadlines for decisions on rival takeover bids by National Australia Bank and AMP for AXA Asia Pacific Holdings. NAB has asked that the trading halt last until the start of trading on Wednesday or an earlier time if agreed by the stock exchange on the basis that an announcement was “imminent.” (Herald Sun)

Reserve bank governor Glenn Stevens says he never had any doubts during the global financial crisis about the ability of Australia’s banks to repay their debts. In the second part of a pre-recorded interview with the Seven Network, broadcast on Tuesday morning, Stevens described how his heart was in his mouth after the central bank surprised the market by slashing official interest rates by one per cent in the midst of the financial crisis. (Sydney Morning Herald)

AMP has reported a $772m underlying profit for 2009, down 5 per cent on 2008. Net profit attributable to shareholders was up 27 per cent to $739m compared to the full year 2008, reflecting improved investment returns, the group stated in a release to the Australian Securities Exchange. (Money Management)

Funding costs and lower margins on home lending are stopping second tier lenders from being competitive, a new review has found. According to research conducted by ING DIRECT, Australia’s 5th largest retail bank, the lack of competition in the market is being further exacerbated by a national shortfall in savings. (The Advisor)

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