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The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) yesterday issued for consultation proposed requirements for financial institutions (FIs) in Singapore to implement essential cyber security measures to protect their IT systems. These requirements will help FIs strengthen their cyber resilience and guard against cyber attacks, says MAS.

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Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has announced that in an agreed settlement before the Federal Court, Australian financial services group Westpac will pay a civil penalty of AUD35 million after admitting breaches of Australia's responsible lending rules. The door-of-the-court settlement avoids a lengthy trial that should have started yesterday.

*** Update: see Westpac's new best friend? Australian Federal Court rejects settlement with regulator ***

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Australia's ASIC has undertaken an extensive review of so-called "reverse mortgages" which are actual mortgages with potentially catastrophic long-tail results, which may be one of the things that borrowers did not understand. The findings of the review are startling.

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The Monetary Authority of Singapore has made a surprising change to the way in which Regulations are published, making the MAS website, and not paper documents, the source of record.

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In a three year credit deal, the EBRD is lending USD (not euros, which might seem weird) to Bank CenterCredit (BCC - no comments please). The total amount is for a maximum of USD45 million. Special provisions are made for businesses run by women.

* Three-year loan of up to USD40 million provided to domestic small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)
* Three-year loan of up to USD5 million under Kazakhstan Women in Business programme

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On Friday 13th July 2018, the UK's Serious Fraud Office obtained, from a Magistrates' Court, a warrant for the arrest of Benedikt Sobotka has been issued over his failure to appear for questioning in an ongoing corruption investigation into ENRC and related companies. Failure to appear when required to do so is itself a criminal offence, independent of the allegations under investigation.

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AUSTRAC has released a consultation paper relating to counter-money laundering regulations in the securities sector.

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Mobile payments are exploited by criminals who use services such as AliPay and WePay coupled with QR codes and while the companies behind the services are, well, behind on customer protection, The People's Bank of China, the central bank, is running ahead of regulators in other jurisdictions to find a solution. Their first idea was harsh. Their second is brutal. Can it work?

There's a huge amount of excitement in Australia about the prosecution of several bankers for colluding in a share support scheme where a share issue did not fully sell out. Instead of being charged with market manipulation, itself a serious offence, federal prosecutors have taken the alternative of charging them with cartel offences. There's a lot of people spinning like tops, having panic attacks about what it means for investment banking and the professional support services like lawyers and accountants that are a central part of all public offers. But there is nothing complex about the fundamentals of the case.

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This morning some media is abuzz with news of an AUD700m settlement between ASIC and Commonwealth Bank of Australia, sometimes known as "CommBank" and sometimes as "CBA". CBA was first out of the stocks with its press release. Then AUSTRAC released the draft Order that will be put before the Court in settlement. What jumped out?

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