Jack Ma’s Ant Group to Plan Consumer Finance Firm

(Bloomberg) — Jack Ma’s Ant Group is planning to create a new consumer finance company to bolster its market share in the country’s fast growing online lending industry.

Ant is working with Nanyang Commercial Bank Ltd., China TransInfo Technology Corp. and Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. to build a consumer finance platform that will focus on doling out loans to individuals in China, people familiar said, requesting not to be named because the matter is private. The Chongqing incorporated company will have a registered capital of 8 billion yuan ($1.2 billion).

China TransInfo Technology jumped as much as 10%, the daily limit, while Contemporary Amperex Technology rose 4.3% in the afternoon trading session.

The new entity would boost Ant’s lending capacity since consumer finance companies are allowed to lend out 10 times their capital. That would far surpass the two to three times leverage of Ant’s existing micro-loan companies in Chongqing,

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Commodity traders face rising finance costs as big banks pull out

* Sector rocked by ABN Amro withdrawal from trade finance

* Banks spooked by commodity trader defaults and frauds

* Costs will rise as funds, bonds will not fill void

By Julia Payne

LONDON, Aug 14 (Reuters) – Commodity trade financing by the world’s banks is drying up at a rate not seen in more than 20 years, leaving small and medium sized firms most exposed, banking and trading sources said.

Banks are retrenching after the coronavirus crisis led to defaults by some trading houses, intermediaries in the global movement of oil, metals and agricultural goods which link producers and end-users, and also exposed a series of frauds.

This week Dutch bank ABN Amro, one of the biggest commodity trade financiers, quit the business after it was among the banks worst hit by the $3.8 billion default of Hin Leong, one of Asia’s biggest oil traders.

“These things are cyclical,

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German Finance Ministry proposes blockchain-based solution to digitize securities in draft bill

The finance ministry of Germany, Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF), released a draft bill on the introduction of electronic securities (eWpG) on Tuesday, and it includes a blockchain solution to digitize securities. 

The bill would revamp both the German securities law and the corresponding supervisory law with a focus on blockchain strategy, according to a press release published by BMF. 

“With the establishment of digital securities, one of the central components of the federal government’s blockchain strategy and the joint key issues paper of the BMF and the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV) on electronic securities (eWpG) will be implemented,” the release said. 

Currently, the law dictates that financial instruments classified as securities under civil law “must be securitized in a document.” This document, a paper certificate, currently acts as the source of all facts relating to each security and incorporates details on buyers’ accounts, according to

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Universities that reject ‘business as usual’ have best chance of surviving COVID-19

Businesses — whether large or small, or whether they are healthcare, educational cultural or recreational institutions — all have been tragically affected by COVID-19. For colleges and universities, the beginning of the fall semester will be especially challenging.

Even prior to the onset of the coronavirus, many universities and colleges were confronted with dire challenges, particularly enrollment declines (down for the ninth year in a row and more than 2 million this decade); rising operating costs; and competition from less expensive, online, for-profit educational vendors. Almost 60 institutions of higher learning — public and private non-profit — have gone out of business or merged over the past four years. Urban universities, such as FIU, are projected to fare better because of its neighboring population and affordable tuition. Those most vulnerable for the next round of closings and mergers are small, church-related institutions where private tuition invariably exceeds that of nearby

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