|Bid||0.00 x 0|
|Ask||0.00 x 0|
|Day's range||47.10 - 48.49|
|52-week range||38.88 - 54.22|
|Beta (5Y monthly)||1.37|
|PE ratio (TTM)||7.77|
|Forward dividend & yield||3.02 (6.20%)|
|Ex-dividend date||29 May 2019|
|1y target est||N/A|
(Bloomberg) -- Fears that the coronavirus could be a disaster for the global economy and a drumbeat of speculation over central-bank stimulus are driving another rally in precious metals.Gold surpassed $1,600 an ounce this week and is closing in on a seven-year high. Palladium climbed for a sixth day in the spot market, extending its record-breaking rally.“Gold is continuing to resist the firm U.S. dollar and appears to remain in good demand as a safe haven because of the Covid-19 virus,” Daniel Briesemann, an analyst at Commerzbank AG analyst, said in a note. “The madness on the palladium market continues.”The most surprising metal remains palladium, which rose as much as 8.4%. The metal used to curb emissions from vehicles rallied as the Chinese government pledged to stabilize car demand in the Asian country. Efforts to contain the coronavirus earlier prompted manufacturing shutdowns.Companies from Apple Inc. to Adidas AG are starting to account for the economic damage of the coronavirus, which has already killed more than 2,000 people. At the same time, traders are paying more attention to the possibility of central bank easing in the coming months.The Federal Reserve has said the effects of the virus have presented a “new risk” to the outlook and traders will study minutes from the latest meeting, due later Wednesday, for any hint of a dovish tone. Lower borrowing costs boost the investment appeal of precious metals that don’t offer yields.Palladium generated a 148% return in the past two years -- the biggest among the raw materials tracked by a DCI BNP Paribas gauge. Prices rallied as supply continued to trail consumption.“There is nothing on the horizon to change the direction of these shortages,” Neal Froneman, the chief executive officer of Sibanye-Stillwater Ltd., said at a presentation in Johannesburg, referring to palladium and rhodium.Stricter vehicle emissions standards are spurring more demand for the metals, which are used to clean car fumes, he said.In China, the world’s largest auto market, areas with purchase limits should be encouraged to soften curbs by increasing car plate quotas, according to an article by President Xi Jinping published in Communist Party-run magazine Qiu Shi on Sunday.Why Palladium Is Suddenly a More Precious Metal: QuickTakePalladium rose 1.9% to $2,678.03 an ounce at 1:53 p.m. in New York after reaching a record $2,849.61 earlier. For a second straight day, the metal’s 14-day relative index stayed above 70, a level seen by traders who study charts as a sign that the commodity is overbought and poised to decline. Futures settled 2.9% higher on the New York Mercantile Exchange.Tighter supply and China’s support for the auto sector “do not justify the renewed upswing in price in our opinion,“ Commerzbank’s Briesemann said.Spot gold advanced 0.5% to $1,609.05 an ounce. Futures closed 0.5% higher on the Comex in New York.\--With assistance from Eddie van der Walt, Felix Njini, Justina Vasquez and Yvonne Yue Li.To contact the reporters on this story: Lynn Thomasson in London at email@example.com;Ranjeetha Pakiam in Singapore at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Luzi Ann Javier at email@example.com, ;Lynn Thomasson at firstname.lastname@example.org, Joe RichterFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
MILAN/LONDON, Feb 6 (Reuters) - European banks have started 2020 on a strong note, much like their rivals in the United States, with a revival in bond trading offsetting pressures from negative interest rates. The European bank shares index erased all of its year-to-date losses on Thursday as strong trading and fee revenues from major banks in the region pointed to a better-than-expected earnings season. Although BNP Paribas had to cut profit targets on Wednesday because of the lower for longer rate environment, investors reacted positively to the French bank's bumper trading revenues.
BNP Paribas is looking for further opportunities to expand its investment banking franchise in Europe and fortify its lead over local rivals after last year taking over Deutsche Bank's electronic equity and prime broking operations. France's biggest bank has jumped to the top of Europe's investment banking league tables by gaining market share in fixed income and equities trading, as others pare back or exit. Yann Gerardin, head of corporate and institutional banking at BNP Paribas, told Reuters after the bank reported a doubling of fourth quarter global markets revenue that it would examine openings like the Deutsche one if they arose.
(Bloomberg) -- Want the lowdown on European markets? In your inbox before the open, every day. Sign up here.BNP Paribas SA kept pace with trading gains at some of its biggest Wall Street rivals in the fourth quarter, while cautioning that it’s not immune to the impact from a prolonged period of negative interest rates.Fixed income, currency and commodity trading revenue jumped almost 63% in the final three months of the year, placing BNP ahead of European rivals Deutsche Bank AG and UBS Group, and in line with some of the biggest U.S. banks such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. Despite those gains, the Paris-based bank joined European rivals in paring a profitability target at a time when lending margins are under pressure.Chief Executive Officer Jean-Laurent Bonnafe is overseeing a revival of the bank’s trading unit after slashing costs and downgrading revenue and profitability targets a year ago. Last year he agreed to take over Deutsche Bank prime brokerage clients as he seeks to take market share from rivals cutting back their investment banks.Equity and prime services revenue increased to 520 million from a “low base” of 145 million euros a year earlier, BNP said. In fixed income trading, it benefited from “very strong growth across all segments.” All told, BNP’s global markets unit -- its key trading division -- more than doubled revenue from a year earlier.Chief Financial Officer Lars Machenil said in a Bloomberg TV interview that the corporate and investment bank is well positioned for 2020 after gaining market share in its key businesses last year.“International financial services remains the engine of growth,” he said.Tweaking TargetsShares of the lender swung between gains and losses as investors weighed the strong trading figures and the slightly muted outlook. The stock was 0.4% lower at 9:51 a.m. in Paris trading, bringing declines this year to 7%.The bank introduced a 10% return on tangible equity target for 2020, dropping a previous and slightly higher target, though the newer figure is still more ambitious than many rivals. For 2020, the bank targets business growth in all its operating divisions and a decrease in the absolute value of its operating expenses.Overall, revenue rose 11.5% in the quarter to 11.3 billion euros, ahead of estimates and outpacing a 4.6% increase in costs in what is known as positive jaws effect. The bank’s common equity Tier 1 ratio, a measure of financial strength, further increased by 10 basis points to 12.1% at the end of the year from the third quarter. Net income rose 8.6% in the quarter to 1.85 billion euros, slightly missing the average analyst estimate of 1.88 billion euros.As part of the measures announced a year ago, Bonnafe pledged an additional 600 million euros in cost cuts to weather a trading slump. The bank is targeting about 3.3 billion euros of expense reductions by 2020. Results at the end of 2018 had been particularly difficult, when the bank lost about $80 million on derivatives trades linked to the U.S. stock market.Wall Street’s RallyThe French bank is past halfway through its 2020 cost plan, but has so far stayed clear of suggesting any big job-cutting plans like those at Parisian rival Societe Generale SA or the thousands of planned reductions at Deutsche Bank. Instead, BNP’s moves have included outsourcing equity research in Asia to Morningstar Inc. The bank said Wednesday that it plans to generate additional recurring savings of 1.5 billion euros in 2020.BNP’s performance in FICC trading last quarter puts it near the middle of the pack compared with Wall Street Peers. Morgan Stanley led the gains after seeing revenue more than double, while JPMorgan posted an 86% jump. Bank of America had one of the lowest increases, with a 25% jump in revenue.BNP Paribas is targeting its spending to win clients in countries such as the U.S., the U.K. and especially Deutsche Bank’s backyard, Germany, where the mass of small and medium-sized companies have traditionally been the backbone of its export-oriented powerhouse economy.\--With assistance from Rudy Ruitenberg.To contact the reporter on this story: Dale Crofts in Zurich at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at firstname.lastname@example.org, Christian BaumgaertelFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- The billionaire Reimann family’s JAB Holding Co. is moving ahead with preparations for an initial public offering of its sprawling coffee empire, which owns brands from Caribou to Peet’s, people with knowledge of the matter said.The investment firm has picked BNP Paribas SA and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to advise on the planned listing, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. JAB is considering raising about 3 billion euros ($3.3 billion) in an Amsterdam IPO of the business, which could take place as soon as the first half of the year, the people said.The offering could become the biggest listing on a European exchange since manufacturer Knorr-Bremse AG raised 3.85 billion euros in October 2018, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Representatives for BNP, JAB and JPMorgan declined to comment.JAB said in December it plans to combine its Jacobs Douwe Egberts and Peet’s units in a single entity before a possible listing. JAB’s coffee unit is expected to generate about 7 billion euros in annual revenue, one of the people said.The Luxembourg-based investment firm has spent tens of billions of dollars investing in brands including Jacobs, Stumptown and Intelligentsia, challenging Nestle SA and Starbucks Corp. for leadership in the industry. JAB has also acquired fast-food brands ranging from Krispy Kreme Doughnuts to the Pret A Manger sandwich chain.To contact the reporters on this story: Myriam Balezou in London at email@example.com;Thomas Buckley in London at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Dinesh Nair at email@example.com, ;Eric Pfanner at firstname.lastname@example.org, Ben Scent, Andrew NoëlFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Credit Suisse , BNP Paribas and French public investment bank Bpifrance are the latest lenders to join an initiative to link provision of shipping finance to cuts in carbon dioxide emissions. Global shipping accounts for 2.2% of the world's CO2 emissions and the industry is under pressure to reduce those emissions and other pollution. Last year, a group of leading banks signed up to environmental commitments known as the "Poseidon Principles", whereby financiers will for the first time take account of efforts to cut CO2 emissions when providing loans to shipping companies.
(Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabia’s push to convene an emergency OPEC+ meeting next month, bringing forward a gathering scheduled for March, ran into resistance from its key oil-market ally, Russia.The kingdom, the biggest member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, has consulted with fellow producers on expediting the meeting -- currently lined up for March 5 to 6 -- amid growing alarm that Asia’s coronavirus outbreak will weaken oil demand, several delegates said.As of Thursday evening, the process was temporarily on hold after encountering a variety of scheduling obstacles, delegates said. Whether talks resume will depend on movements in oil prices, one of the delegates said. West Texas Intermediate crude, the U.S. benchmark, was down 2.8% at $51.86 a barrel as of 12:59 p.m. local time. If the cartel and its allies were to agree on an early meeting, historical precedent suggests it could result in action to further curtail supply, deepening the cut that the group agreed in December. Every time OPEC has called an emergency session over the last decade or so, it has immediately reduced production in an effort to lift prices. It did so in Doha in 2006 and in Vienna in 2008.The overture has so far been rebuffed by Russia, the biggest and most important producer in the broader coalition known as OPEC+, the delegates said. The 23-nation alliance has been cutting supply for much of the past three years to defend oil prices, which have plunged about 15% in New York this month.Moscow has often been reluctant to restrain production unless absolutely necessary, because it requires lower prices than the Saudis and most other OPEC countries to cover government spending.Still, discussions about the early meeting continue, the delegates said. Algerian Energy Minister Mohamed Arkab -- who currently holds the ceremonial post of OPEC president -- said the cartel will make a decision within days, according to a report from the Algerie Presse Service.(Updates with comments from delegates in third paragraph.)\--With assistance from Nayla Razzouk, Lucia Kassai, Jim Silver, Salma El Wardany, Golnar Motevalli, Annmarie Hordern and Dina Khrennikova.To contact the reporters on this story: Grant Smith in London at email@example.com;Javier Blas in London at firstname.lastname@example.org;Salma El Wardany in Cairo at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Nayla Razzouk at firstname.lastname@example.org, James HerronFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Terms of Trade is a daily newsletter that untangles a world embroiled in trade wars. Sign up here. The Federal Reserve kept its key interest rate unchanged and continued to signal policy would stay on hold for the time being, while stressing the importance of lifting inflation to officials’ target.The central bank also made a technical adjustment to the rate it pays on reserve balances and said it would extend at least through April a program aimed at smoothing volatility in money markets.“We believe monetary policy is well positioned to serve the American people by supporting continued economic growth,” Chairman Jerome Powell told a press conference Wednesday in Washington. Officials kept the target range of the benchmark federal funds rate at 1.5% to 1.75% and called that stance “appropriate to support sustained expansion of economic activity.”U.S. stocks erased gains while yields on the 10-year Treasury note declined and the dollar fluctuated. Traders extended bets the Fed would cut rates toward the end of this year.“The Fed has made it clear that the barriers to move in either direction are quite high,” said said Daniel Ahn, the chief U.S. economist at BNP Paribas. “But we believe the wall for a cut is lower than the wall for a hike.” He detected a “dovish tilt” in Powell’s efforts to stress the Fed was uncomfortable with inflation running persistently too low.Policy makers changed their statement to say that the current stance of monetary policy is appropriate to support “inflation returning to the committee’s symmetric 2% objective.” Previously they had said policy was supporting inflation “near” the goal.Powell explained in his press conference that the change was made to send “a clearer signal” that the committee was not comfortable with inflation running persistently below target. “We wanted to underscore our commitment to 2% not being a ceiling,” he said.Click here for Bloomberg’s TOPLive blog on the decisionTheir preferred gauge of price pressures -- the personal consumption expenditures price index -- rose 1.5% for the 12 months ending in November. Powell said inflation was expected to move closer to 2% over the next few months thanks to so-called base effects, “as unusually low readings from early 2019 drop out of the calculation.”Decision HighlightsOfficials made some changes even while keeping their benchmark interest rate steady.They approved a 5 basis-point increase on the rate they pay on excess reserves to 1.6% -- a technical adjustment designed to keep the main funds rate within its designated range.The Fed raised its overnight reverse repurchase rate by the same amount to 1.5%, and extended term and overnight repos at least through April. The central bank had earlier signaled such measures were possible.It downgraded its assessment of household spending to say it has been rising at a “moderate” pace, instead of its earlier characterization of the rate as being “strong.”The committee repeated that economic activity has been rising at a “moderate” rate, with “strong labor market conditions.”Officials gathered with financial markets on edge as a deadly virus in China weighs on its economy and could threaten global growth. Policy makers also endured another attack from President Donald Trump, facing re-election in November, who reiterated in a tweet Tuesday his latest call for the Fed to cut rates.The FOMC decision was the panel’s second-straight unanimous vote.Following three cuts in 2019, U.S. central bankers have said their policy is supporting the country’s record expansion despite headwinds from trade and geopolitical uncertainty.What Bloomberg’s Economists SayThe implicit message is that, while policy makers are alert to international developments (i.e. coronavirus, geopolitics, etc.), the accommodative setting of policy -- 75 bps to 100 bps below the committee’s median estimate of neutral -- should give the economy enough support to endure modest changes to the risk landscape.--Carl Riccadonna, Yelena Shulyatyeva and Andrew HusbyClick here to view the noteNonfarm payroll growth averaged 176,000 a month last year, while the unemployment rate held below 4% for most of the year.Data since the December FOMC meeting have shown the housing market has held up, fueled in part by last year’s rate cuts. Consumers also remain upbeat about their prospects, surveys have shown.Manufacturing, however, has showed scant improvement, consistent with a downshift in investment and sluggish markets for exports.Business investment could be further dented by Boeing Co.’s suspension of 737 Max production starting in January. The plane maker received just three commercial aircraft orders in December, down from 63 the prior month, and doesn’t expect regulators to clear the grounded Max to resume flying until mid-2020.\--With assistance from Jordan Yadoo, Vivien Lou Chen, Sophie Caronello, Matthew Boesler and Ana Monteiro.To contact the reporter on this story: Craig Torres in Washington at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Alister Bull at firstname.lastname@example.org, Scott Lanman, Jeff KearnsFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Want the lowdown on European markets? In your inbox before the open, every day. Sign up here.Sterling traders are sounding confident on the currency’s prospects as they head into one of the most uncertain U.K. interest-rate decisions in years.Thursday’s policy announcement from the Bank of England has tempted investors to sell the currency on speculation of easing. They have also been positioning for an advance over the coming month if the BOE resists calls for action -- or even if it signals a ‘one-and-done’ 25 basis-point reduction. The only factor that could catch them out may be if the BOE hints at further easing and sounds an alarm on the economy.“Should the BOE cut rates this time, as we expect, some indicators in the options markets and on investor positioning suggest sterling’s retreat would likely remain relatively contained,” UniCredit SpA strategists including Roberto Mialich wrote in a note. The Italian bank sees the pound falling to between $1.2950 and $1.3000 in the event of a reduction.Bets on a rate cut have whipsawed in recent weeks and the pound has fluctuated on dovish comments from policy makers and conflicting data about the wider health of the economy. On Wednesday money markets were pricing in an over 40% chance of a rate cut. This was lower than the 70% chance just a couple of weeks ago.“Pricing in of the probability of rate cut in January subsided from the highs following some tentative signs in forward-looking data,” said Agne Stengeryte, fixed income strategist at BNP Paribas SA, adding that “today it is profit taking.”Overnight pound volatility picked up to its highest level since December. The pound slipped for a fifth day on Wednesday to near $1.30 and was on track for its worst month against the dollar since July.Yet a gauge of market positioning, one-month risk reversals, is hovering near its most bullish sentiment on the pound since October. For some analysts the big picture remains positive, and with sterling facing pressure there’s room for a shift upward.Stuttgart-based Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg is both one of the most accurate pound forecasters in recent months and a notable bull. They forecast the currency strengthening nearly 12% to $1.45 at year-end.“We think the BOE will stay on hold throughout 2020, maybe even increasing rates toward the end of the year,” senior economist Dirk Chlench said by phone, citing economic performance improving and increased political certainty.Fade Rallies The pound was the second-best Group-of-10 performer against the dollar in 2019, as it rallied toward the end of the year on confidence that the Conservatives would win the December election and help end the U.K.’s political stalemate.Still, some say any further gains will be limited.If the BOE holds rates on Thursday “we might get a little bit of a relief rally in sterling which would just provide better levels to sell against,” said Jeremy Stretch, the head of G-10 currency research at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. “If we see a bounce up to the $1.3150-60 area that will be a good point to fade.”Even if the BOE does ease policy the pound could strengthen. Toronto-Dominion Bank sees the BOE lowering rates twice in the first half of 2020, yet believe they will support U.K. growth, boosting sterling by nearly 8% to $1.40 by year-end.“We would need to see a significant escalation of virus concerns or a clear validation that a follow-up rate cut was in the near-term pipeline for support around $1.2825 to face a meaningful challenge,” Ned Rumpeltin, European head of foreign exchange strategy at Toronto-Dominion, wrote in a client note.(Updates BOE pricing in fourth paragraph, adds comment in fifth paragraph)\--With assistance from James Hirai.To contact the reporters on this story: Greg Ritchie in London at email@example.com;Anooja Debnath in London at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Dana El Baltaji at email@example.com, William Shaw, Neil ChatterjeeFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Britain's finance sector is losing hope of securing even basic access to European Union markets from Dec. 31, as talk that the EU wants UK fishing rights in exchange draws the industry into a political struggle between the bloc and its departing member. Hopes were high that Prime Minister Boris Johnson would prioritise the financial sector -- Britain's largest export industry and biggest corporate tax generator -- in trade talks. Until now, financial firms running EU operations from Britain believed that technical assessments by EU banking, insurance and markets regulators would be enough judge UK rules 'equivalent' to those governing EU-based firms, granting them market access after December.
France's BNP Paribas is joining forces with three other major French companies to set up an innovation centre in Brazil to foster startups accelerating digital transformation and help the bigger firms become more efficient. Based in Brazil's richest city, Sao Paulo, the 1,000 square-meter hub, called La Fabrique, will be shared with Carrefour Brasil SA , pre-paid meal vouchers and card provider Edenred and financial transaction systems developer Ingenico Group . "We are looking for startups that may help BNP gain efficiency," BNP Paribas Chief Executive and country head Sandrine Ferdane told Reuters in an interview.
Stress testing of banks in the European Union to check their ability to withstand market shocks without taxpayer help should be eased to cut bank costs, the EU's banking regulator proposed on Wednesday. The European Banking Authority (EBA) proposed a new framework that would allow banks to publish their own results of the stress test alongside the EBA's. Only one set of results are published now. "The framework we are proposing today aims at making the EU-wide stress test more informative, flexible, and cost-effective," EBA Chair Jose Manuel Campa said in a statement.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The clock is ticking for Frederic Oudea. After more than 11 years running Societe Generale SA, the French bank is searching for an eventual successor. A new leader may bring a change of course, but undoing the lender’s strategic missteps will require some fancy footwork.SocGen wants a replacement to succeed the 56-year-old Frenchman once his term expires in three years, Bloomberg News reported this week. That a search is underway shows SocGen knows it needs to look beyond the obvious contenders, Oudea’s deputies — an acknowledgment that succession planning hasn’t gone well.And Oudea might be replaced before his term expires, according to Bloomberg. That the bank should be open to finding a new chief executive officer just months after reconfirming Oudea signals a lack of confidence in his restructuring plan, the bank’s biggest in years.SocGen’s shares value it at less than half of its tangible book; that’s well below its big domestic peers. BNP Paribas SA and Credit Agricole SA trade at more than 77% and 87% of book, respectively. No wonder the board is concerned.After failing to meet revenue, cost to income and profitability targets in his previous three-year plan, Oudea is cutting another 2,000 jobs, retreating from parts of fixed-income trading and selling some smaller foreign offshoots to improve capital. The moves are helping somewhat. The bank’s CET1 ratio — a measure of its ability to absorb potential losses — rose almost 50 basis points to 12.5% at the end of the third quarter, ahead of its own 2020 target.The trouble is that SocGen is far too exposed to a cut-throat, low-margin French consumer banking business, and a volatile investment bank. The two units made up a combined 60% or so of group revenue in the third quarter, and 50% of operating income. Revenue was flat in the retail business and fell in investment banking. Income from equities plunged, a reminder that even the bank’s areas of traditional strength cannot be relied upon when markets turn against them.While there were higher returns in the company’s insurance, car leasing and international businesses, SocGen’s exit from asset management has left it less diversified than peers. While the need to bolster capital didn’t give Oudea much choice but to sell Amundi SA, the strategy is hurting.With capital buffers just about where they need to be, Oudea or a potential successor are somewhat constrained. Dipping back into fund management now might be costly.Unless the outlook for interest rates improves, or there’s a sustained rebound in investment banking, it’s hard to see an alternative to finding more cuts, reducing risk and quitting non-core businesses. Making SocGen palatable to a potential buyer isn’t very aspirational but it’s better than standing still.To contact the author of this story: Elisa Martinuzzi at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Boxell at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Elisa Martinuzzi is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering finance. She is a former managing editor for European finance at Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
* European shares rise on trade deal optimism: STOXX 0.6% * Trump says U.S. is very close to "big deal" with China * ECB keeps generous stimulus unchanged, Lagarde notes recovery * FTSE 100 outperforms as UK polls open, up 1.2% * S&P 500 hits record high Welcome to the home for real-time coverage of European equity markets brought to you by Reuters stocks reporters and anchored today by Julien Ponthus. Reach him on Messenger to share your thoughts on market moves: rm://firstname.lastname@example.org BASEL III: FRENCH BANKS STRIKE BACK (1542 GMT) The French banks' lobbying efforts to soften the impact of the so-called Basel III rules have not gone unnoticed.
Some of Europe's biggest banks are being challenged by environmental groups to sever all lending to utilities which they say are still developing new coal-fired power plants. The call comes as some 190 countries meet in Madrid to assess progress on the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement, which demands a virtual end to coal power by 2050. A United Nations report last year said almost all coal-fired power plants would need to close by the middle of this century to curb a rise in global temperatures to 1.5 degrees Celsius, in line with the level scientists say is needed to stave off the worst effects of climate change.
BNP Paribas is considering laying off around 250 employees in Switzerland, France's biggest bank said on Friday, blaming "major challenges" in the Swiss financial environment and as it seeks to cut costs group-wide. The bank said it has begun an employee consultation period, which will to run through Jan. 14, to consider measures that could reduce the number of job cuts which will be implemented in 2020 and 2021. "BNP Paribas in Switzerland, like other banks, currently finds itself facing major challenges: negative rates, a contraction in margins and a speeding-up of technology investments, all against the backdrop of a contrasted global growth environment within Europe," it said.
BNP Paribas 's Nickel bank, which sells debit cards and current accounts at tobacconist networks in France, plans to launch in Spain across lottery shops next year as part of a strategy to expand in Europe by 2024. It is also seeking to increase the number of clients in France to 4 million by end-2024 from 1.5 million currently. Nickel accounts are available at more than 5,000 tobacconists in France, as the bank seeks to lure people who may be unable to open a traditional bank account.