Saturday 30th August 2014
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South Africa’s central bank has disagreed with a ratings decision by Moody’s to downgrade Capitec Bank Limited (Capitec) by two notches, and place it on review for a further downgrade. The central bank says it respects the independent opinion of rating agencies but that it does not “agree with the rationale given in taking this step”. Two reasons are given for the rating action: a lower likelihood of sovereign systemic support based on decisions recently taken in relation to African Bank Limited (African Bank), and heightened concerns regarding the risk inherent in Capitec’s consumer lending focus. “With regard to the first point, it is important to reiterate that the approach taken by the SARB to any resolution to address systemic risk will always be based on the circumstances and merits of the particular prevailing situation. Decisions will also be informed, as was the case with African Bank, by principles contained in the Key Attributes for Effective Resolution Regimes proposed by the Financial Stability Board (FSB), which have the objective that a bank should be able to fail without affecting the system,” notes the central bank in an official statement. “This is in keeping with evolving international best practice. In the case of African Bank bond holders and wholesale depositors are taking a 10% haircut, which is generally regarded as being very positive given that the trades following the announcement of African Bank's results were taking place at around 40% of par. Therefore in fact substantial support was provided, not reduced. Moreover, all retail depositors were kept whole and are able to access their accounts fully,” it adds - According to the Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) credit card receivables increased by 2.1% in the second quarter to HKD112, after a reduction of 6.7% in the previous quarter. The total number of credit card accounts edged up by 0.7% to around 16.8m.The rollover amount, which reflects the amount of borrowing by customers using their credit cards, increased by 2.9% during the quarter to HKD19.2bn. The rollover ratio also rose marginally from 17.0% to 17.1% in the same period. The charge-off amount increased to HKD569mduring the quarter from HKD528m in the previous quarter. Correspondingly, the quarterly charge-off ratio rose to 0.51% from 0.46% in the previous quarter. The amount of rescheduled receivables transferred outside the surveyed institutions’ credit card portfolios reduced to HKD94m from HK$109m in the previous quarter. The delinquent amount increased to HKD249m at end-June from HKD239m at end-March. However, the delinquency ratio remained the same at 0.22% because of an increase in total card receivables. The combined delinquent and rescheduled ratio (after taking into account the transfer of rescheduled receivables mentioned above) edged up to 0.29% from 0.28% during the same period - Harkand has been awarded a contract to support Apache with inspection, repair and maintenance work (IRM) as well as light construction (LC) across their assets in the North Sea, following completion of a competitive tender exercise. The award includes the provision of vessels, ROV and diving services for a three-year period, plus two one-year options. The firm will also support offshore marine construction contractor EMAS AMC who have been awarded a separate contract for pipe lay and heavy construction as part of the same tender process. Harkand Europe managing director, David Kerr, said: “This contract is an important step in strengthening our close working relationship and growing our North Sea business with Apache.
Investment banks draw up green bond guidelines Copyright Dreamstime.com

Investment banks draw up green bond guidelines

Monday, 13 January 2014
Investment banks draw up green bond guidelines New principles on the development and issuance of green bonds have been drawn up by a group of large investment banks. http://www.ftseglobalmarkets.com/media/k2/items/cache/63b46f1e9614c655caa7fc03ac211b27_XL.jpg

New principles on the development and issuance of green bonds have been drawn up by a group of large investment banks.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citi, Crédit Agricole CIB and JPMorgan drafted the new framework, which guides disclosing, managing and reporting on the proceeds of a green bond.

Green bonds issued by banks and corporates are proving popular with firms seeking socially responsible investments, recent figures show. High issuance in November 2013 is reported to have doubled the total raised in 2013 to nearly $10bn and positioned the market for further growth.

The new steps are set to provide issuers with guidance on the key components involved in launching a green bond and aid investors evaluating the environmental impact of their investments.

"The development of a robust and liquid market for green bonds is an important progression for debt markets," says Suzanne Buchta, global co-head of Green Debt Capital Markets at BofA Merrill. "In co-authoring these principles we attempt to help standardize the product and we hope to catalyse investment into environmentally sustainable projects, something to which our firm is very committed."

Tanguy Claquin, managing director at Crédit Agricole CIB adds: "We are very pleased to have co-authored and announced the establishment of the Green Bond Principles. This is an important first step towards a more coherent approach to the market of Green and Sustainability Bonds, which will ultimately increase its attractiveness for investors thus encouraging investments into sustainability projects."

BNP Paribas, Daiwa, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Mizuho Securities, Morgan Stanley, Rabobank and SEB have all backed the principles.

The four banks that drafted the framework are set to propose a governance process that will allow for stakeholder input into the guidelines.

Read more about the Green Bond Principles here <http://www.ceres.org/greenbondprinciples> .

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