RETAIL BANKING | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Weekly Global News Wrap Up: Can global bank stocks bounce back in 2019?; Saxo Bank to buy Dutch online lender for $480m

And here's how Brexit is affecting Credit Suisse's wealth management strategy.

From Bloomberg: Bank stocks underperformed the broader market in 2018, besieged by disappointing loan growth, tougher competition for lending, the need to pay more for deposits, and worries about an economic slowdown and deteriorating credit. 

The broad KBW Bank Index and the narrower KBW Regional Bank index have both declined about 17 percent so far this year through early Tuesday trading, versus a 4 percent drop for the S&P 500 Index. Bellwether Bank of America Corp. fell 16 percent year-to-date, investor favorite JPMorgan Chase & Co. was down 6.8 percent, and penalty-box bank Wells Fargo & Co. was down 23 percent. 

The best scenario for bank shares may be a “resurgence” from valuation lows sometime in 2019, if there’s a soft landing for the economy, he said. “Banks will do well if the Fed pauses,” KBW chief equities strategist Frederick Cannon said. 

From CNBC: Saxo Bank is buying Dutch online bank BinckBank for around $480m to expand in the online trading and investment business where competition is heating up.

Traditional banks are having to compete with fintech startups, new payment providers and large internet platforms like Amazon venturing into the payment industry. "It's an arms race developing unique technology, better mobile platforms, and cheaper and more diverse products," Chief Executive Officer Kim Fournais said in an interview with Reuters.

From CNBC: Wealth managers at Swiss bank Credit Suisse have advised their high-net worth clients to think about moving assets out of the U.K. due to the uncertainty surrounding Brexit. according to the Financial Times. 

The FT reported Tuesday that clients with a net worth of at least $30 million, known as ultra-high net worth individuals (UNHWI), were advised they might want to "accelerate" plans to move their investments out of London before Prime Minister Theresa May's upcoming vote in Parliament in the third week of January.

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