Standard Chartered shuts renminbi solutions team in the West

  • Banking
  • Thursday, 03 Dec 2015

Standard Chartered Plc will have to pay a US$300mil penalty and suspend or exit some important businesses after charges relating to money laundering by US regulators - AFP Photo.

HONG KONG: Standard Chartered has shut its renminbi (RMB) solutions group in the United States and Europe, according to a source with direct knowledge of the matter, as part of a major restructuring that has forced the lender to take an axe to a fast-growing business in the industry.

The bank's move to cut this department comes at a time of growing prospects for the Chinese currency in global international trade and as other financial institutions jostle to build up their China-focused franchise in the West.

The bank was not immediately available to comment.

In a landmark move this week, The International Monetary Fund admitted China's yuan into its benchmark currency basket, in a victory for Beijing's campaign for recognition as a global economic power.

The RMB solutions group was formed in 2013 as part of a concerted push by the bank to create strategies for a wide group of investors including central banks, sovereign wealth funds and large multinational companies who were seeking opportunities to profit from the opening up of China's capital markets.

To further that initiative, Carmen Ling was appointed as the global head for the RMB solutions group in 2013 based out of Hong Kong.

Caroline Owen was appointed as the regional head of the Americas and Alexandra Gropp was appointed as the executive director in Europe. Both of them, along with two other employees in that group, have left the bank in the last three months, according to the source.

Last month, the bank said it plans to axe 15,000 jobs and raise $5.1 billion by selling new shares as its new chief executive set out a plan to restore profitability after three years of falling profits and strategic mistakes. - Reuters

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