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Daily Dispatches – Asian IPO market heats up

After a rather lacklustre year. the IPO market in Hong Kong is experiencing something of a resurgence, says Finance Asia.

This week saw the listing of Beijing-based Phoneix Healthcare, and up soon is China Cinda Asset Management. FA reports that there is some talk in the market that China Everbright Bank may return to the markets again, after two previous attempts to list in Hong Kong were aborted.

Other companies looking to list and are busy with roadshows or pre-roadshow marketing include YuanShengTai Dairy Farm; Dongpeng Holdings; Qinhuangdao Port and Hengshi Minig Investments.

The foreign banks involved in this flurry of listing activity include Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse, CICC, Citi, HSBC, JPMorgan, UBS and others.

Doubts cloud second half profit expectations for Japan’s banks

Bloomberg says Japan’s three biggest banks wont have such a good second half, after posting a surge in first-half profits this week.

The forecast for lower second-half earnings reflects the banks’ uncertainty over whether Prime Minister Shinzo Abe can sustain an economic recovery that’s been driven by government spending and a weaker yen.  

Ouch! JPMorgan gets a smack down on Twitter

The troubled bank – subject of a flood of US Justice Department investigations in the US – launched a Q&A Twitter campaign this week on leadership and career advice, only to get a vitriolic response from the Twittersphere, according to an article reproduced on the Mashable website.

#AskJPM elicited questions like “Did you have a specific number of people’s lives you needed to ruin before you considered your business model a success?” and  “How many homeless people did you create in ’08?” The Q&A has been cancelled, says the Financial Times.

Mizuho Bank’s Mob misery continues

After denying they knew anything about it, then saying they had been unaware of their clients’ gangster connections, Mizuho Bank bosses now say they had knowingly done business with clients “identified as antisocial forces”, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal.

The bank has been dragged down by a $2 million lending scandal, which saw 230 small loans to members of the Yakuza, Ja[an’s organised crime syndicates.

A fine arts degree is not longer viewed as career suicide

New US studies point to mounting evidence that graduates with arts degrees do well, have relatively low unemployment rates, and tend to be happy with their choices and their lives, says the Wall Street Journal.

Manulife buys Malaysian fund house

Asian Investor reports that Manulife Holdings will acquire MAAKL Mutual, part of the Kuala Lumpur-based MAA Group.

The deal will boost its Malaysian assets to $2 billion, and make it one of the country’s top 10 unit trust firms.

IMF gives Singapore’s financial system top marks

The review, which takes place every five years, reported that the Lion City’s financial sector is “highly developed, and well regulated and supervised”, and its current regulation and supervision “are among the best globally”, according to the Business Times.

But the report also suggested that Singapore needs to enhance its existing frameworks, further develop its crisis management arrangements, and remain vigilant over credit growth.



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