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Home » Daily Briefing » Daily briefing - 8 November 2016

Daily briefing - 8 November 2016

South Africa's Public Investment Corporation, which manages "about $130 billion of South African government employees pension assets" has sought approval from the bank regulator to increase its share in Barclays Africa, reports Reuters. "PIC has always looked at Barclays Plc's retreat as an opportunity to create a black-owned bank, but there aren't many people with deep pockets to make that happen," one of the sources said. "But PIC on its own can buy to a level where Barclays will be able to deconsolidate it and has approached the Reserve Bank for ways to go about it." Previously, Bob Diamond's Atlas Merchant Capital has declared an interest in obtaining a share in Barclays Africa, but the South African central bank has already stated that it favours a long-term strategic investor in the bank rather than a private equity firm.

Details are emerging about the unprecedented theft of money from 20,000 accounts at Tesco Bank in Britain as the bank scrambles to find out what happened. A classic attack, it happened over the weekend, so customers received notes about attacks on their accounts, but the bank was badly understaffed as it tried to respond — in other words, automated security systems worked but there were not enough people 'at desks' to deal with the issue, a fact well known to criminals. The Telegraph quotes Cliff Moyce of tech firm Data Art, who says: "The fact it was 40,000 accounts compromised gives you a clue that the details were probably all got in one go. This may have been down to the exploitation of a weak system. Or it could be that a member of staff was involved." Moyce cites the efficiency of 'phishing' to obtain bank details. The UK's Office of National Statistics says that 23 percent of people open phishing emails. With one in four performing this unwitting equivalent of inviting a burglar into the house, the bank cybersecurity industry looks set for a healthy future. It's worth noting that a new survey of global financial services workers by Depositary Trust and Clearing Corporation (DTCC) finds cyber risk to be more of a threat than Donald Trump or Brexit.

Norway's world-beating pension fund wrestles continuously with ethical issues over where it invests its vast resources, and DNB Bank in Oslo is now facing ethical issues of its own. Over the weekend, the bank said it will reconsider its investment in the financing of the controversial Dakota Access pipeline in North America, which is being built to bring shale oil to Illinois. "DNB looks with worry at how the situation around the pipeline in North Dakota has developed. The bank will therefore take initiative and use its position to bring about a more constructive process to find a solution to the conflict," Norway's largest bank said in a statement, reports Reuters. Native American tribes have gathered at the Standing Rock Sioux reservation in an effort to draw attention to the project. Environmentalists have targeted the banks behind the financing of the pipelines, the New York Times reports.

Two global investment banks backed away from offering shares in Uber to their high net worth clients earlier this year because of a lack of financial information, according to a new report from Bloomberg. "JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank were concerned they wouldn't be able to fill demand for the offering given the lack of specifics, the people said. Deutsche Bank also took into consideration that share sales through banks' private-wealth divisions are unusual, and it hadn't done one before, one person said."

Deutsche Post saw its third-quarter profits triple on the back of a booming e-commerce market as the German logistics business extended its reach. "The gains came as more online retailers shipped parcels with Deutsche Post, which added the UK, Europe's largest e-commerce market, to its network in the region this year", according to a Bloomberg report. "We are taking an increasingly active role in the development of e-commerce all over the world," chief executive officer Frank Appel said in the statement. The business is Deutsche Post's "most important structural growth driver."

As Digital Payments Gain, Battle to Retain Default Card Status Heats up
RBS to compensate squeezed firms
ICICI Bank Shares Rally Despite Higher Bad Loans In Q2
Santander returns to the table over possible deal for RBS branches
Are Brits tiring of Black Friday shopping scrum?

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