Netherlands | Milestone
As a part of the restructuring agreement between ING, the Dutch government and the European Commission, ING agreed to several of what it called “bans,” according to an email sent by a company spokesman to Global Finance
Netherlands | Milestone
Vatican | Newsmakers
René Brülhart, known as the “James Bond of the financial world” for his high-profile role in cases such as the return of assets from Saddam Hussein to post-war Iraq and the uncovering of the Siemens bribery scandal, has become chairman of the Vatican’s anti-money-laundering unit.
Shareholder Activism | Management
Shareholder activism—when investors in a company use their equity as a lever to pressure management—is booming and will grow dramatically on both sides of the Atlantic through mid-2016
View From The Top
Global Finance speaks to leading executives at the World’s Safest Banks.
FX Supplement 2014 | Overview
Will regulation repair forex’s damaged reputation—and are banks ready for the culture change?
Capital Markets | Mergers & Acquisitions
Global cross-border mergers and acquisitions totaled $1.1 trillion during the first nine months of 2014, more than double the level of the same period a year earlier, according to Thomson Reuters.
COUNTRY REPORT | CYPRUS
Amid continuing harsh austerity measures, things are—very slowly—starting to recover, alongside restructuring that will change the focus of the economy. GDP in 2014 should contract by 3.5% before flattening out next year, with 0.2% growth forecast.
Europe’s bond market grew 50% faster than the global rate during the first nine months of the year—by 4.6% year-on-year—but small foreign rating agencies jockeying for a piece of the action are crying foul.
Trends | Foreign Exchange
The global imbalance created by Europe’s huge current-account surplus and excess savings has created a glut of euros that could condemn the single currency to broad-based weakening.
Newsmakers | United Kingdom
After a bumpy ride, the UK’s candidate, lord Jonathan Hill, has been confirmed by the European Parliament as commissioner for financial stability, capital markets and financial services.
Milestones | Myanmar
After five decades of economic isolation, on October 1, Myanmar took its first big step into the global financial system, granting nine foreign lenders preliminary approval to operate in the country.
This month the European Central Bank will start to buy euro-denominated asset-backed securities (ABS) and covered bonds in an effort to revive a market that has been sharply impaired since the financial crisis.
COUNTRY REPORT | TURKEY: OVERVIEW
Recent presidential elections saw political continuity and investor appetite maintained in Turkey, but high levels of indebtedness and political divisions cause some concern.
COUNTRY REPORT | TURKEY: BANKING
Turkey’s president is not a fan of them, and an increasing tide of regulation and a growing debt profile make for a difficult operating environment for Turkish banks.
NEWSMAKERS | UNITED KINGDOM
From Washington to Madrid, there was a collective sigh of relief breathed around Western capitals when Scottish voters decided by a majority of 55% to reject the call for independence and remain part of the United Kingdom. For all those who did not want Scotland to secede, an unlikely hero had emerged in the form of Gordon Brown.
NEWSMAKERS | SPAIN
Less than 24 hours after the sudden death, in September, of her father Emilio Botín, widely recognized as one of the shrewdest, most successful bankers in modern history, Ana Patricia Botín was unanimously named by the board to take the helm of Banco Santander, an institution that has been under the control of her family for three generations.
TREASURY & CASH MANAGEMENT | PAYMENTS: POST-SEPA
The SEPA migration deadline may have passed, but most companies have yet to gain the full benefits offered by the Single Euro Payments Area initiative. Now would be a good time for treasurers to ask how they can get more out of their SEPA investments.
In this first installment of a two-part series, Global Finance identifies the top online corporate and consumer banks by country and then by region, according to product or service category.
Known as a credible and pragmatic politician, the leader of Sweden’s Social Democratic party, Stefan Löfven, is gearing up to become the country’s next prime minister.