Major funds exposed to companies allegedly engaged in Uyghur repression in China

Report finds stock indexes provided by MSCI include companies using forced labour or constructing surveillance state in Xinjiang

Many of the world’s largest asset managers and state pension funds are passively investing in companies that have allegedly engaged in the repression of Uyghur Muslims in China, according to a new report.

The report, by UK-based group Hong Kong Watch and the Helena Kennedy Centre for International Justice at Sheffield Hallam University, found that three major stock indexes provided by MSCI include at least 13 companies that have allegedly used forced labour or been involved in the construction of the surveillance state in China’s Xinjiang region.

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UBS should be banned from doing business in PNG after loan deal, PM tells parliament

James Marape says failed deal cost country ‘in excess of $AUD340m’ and accused bank of overcharging by AUD$175m

The Australian arm of UBS should be banned from doing business in Papua New Guinea for ten years and former prime minister Peter O’Neill should be prosecuted over their roles in a loan that resulted in a huge loss to the country, current prime minister James Marape has said.

A former government led by O’Neill obtained the AUD$1.3bn loan from global investment bank UBS in 2014, in order to acquire a 10.1% share interest in oil and gas exploration company Oil Search Limited. However the price of Oil Search shares soon plunged, with PNG’s shares later sold at a loss.

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Ex-Goldman banker Roger Ng found guilty in billion-dollar 1MDB scandal

Ng, 49, found guilty of helping to embezzle money earmarked for development in one of biggest frauds in financial history

The former Goldman Sachs executive Roger Ng has been found guilty of helping to steal billions of dollars from Malaysia’s 1MDB sovereign wealth fund after a lengthy trial brought by US prosecutors, who described the fraud as one the largest financial scandals in history and who hoped to show that individuals are always at the center of corporate wrongdoing.

A New York jury found Ng, 49, once Goldman’s top investment banker in Malaysia, guilty of helping his former boss Tim Leissner embezzle money intended for development to benefit Malaysia’s poor from a fund connected to Malaysia’s then prime minister, Najib Razak, and then to launder the proceeds while bribing officials in Malaysia and Abu Dhabi.

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1MDB scandal: bribery and bigamy loom large in ex-Goldman Sachs banker’s trial

Roger Ng pleads not guilty to helping launder millions of dollars looted from Malaysian sovereign wealth fund

On the first day of a trial over the multibillion-dollar looting of a Malaysian government fund, US prosecutors on Monday accused a former Goldman Sachs banker of taking $35m in kickbacks as his defense team slammed the prosecution’s star witness as a bigamist who used their client as a fall guy.

Roger Ng, Goldman’s former head of investment banking in Malaysia, is charged with conspiring to launder money and violating anti-bribery law in his dealings with Malaysia’s 1MDB sovereign wealth fund.

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‘Eerie silence’ as Evergrande misses payment deadline

As debt-laden Chinese property giant enters 30-day grace period, officials look to limit unrest and job losses

The embattled Chinese property developer Evergrande is inching closer to the potential default that investors fear, after missing an interest payment deadline.

The company, which has total debts of about $305bn (£222bn), has run short of cash and investors are worried a collapse could pose systemic risks to China’s financial system and reverberate around the world.

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Evergrande vows to meet local debt deadline, but doubts remain over dollar bond

Embattled Chinese property giant allays some market concerns despite lack of guidance over $83.5m due on a separate offshore debt

Chinese property developer Evergrande has said it would pay some of the bond interest due on Thursday, allaying fears of an imminent and messy collapse that had spooked investors.

Markets in Taiwan and China reopened lower after a two-day break, catching up with a sharp sell-off around the world triggered by concern over Evergrande’s predicament.

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Shares in China’s Evergrande plunge again as fears of contagion grow

Hong Kong stock fell up to 19% amid default fears that are beginning to have a knock-on effect on other markets

Shares in the embattled Chinese property company Evergrande have plunged again as investors weigh up whether the group’s massive debt problems could trigger a broader sell off across all financial markets.

Related: ‘China’s Lehman Brothers moment’: Evergrande crisis rattles economy

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‘China’s Lehman Brothers moment’: Evergrande crisis rattles economy

President Xi Jinping faces serious test of his financial reforms as struggles of property giant send ripples through real-estate sector

The crisis engulfing Evergrande, China’s second-biggest property company, is the greatest test yet of President Xi Jinping’s effort to reform the debt-ridden behemoths of the Chinese economy. It could also be the most significant test that China’s financial system has faced in many years.

As angry protesters occupied the headquarters of the troubled property developer in recent weeks, some analysts have described the Evergrande crisis as “China’s Lehman Brothers moment”. Only this time it’s a credit-fuelled housebuilder that suddenly can’t pay its $300bn debts, rather than a blue-chip investment bank that many assumed was too big to fail but was instead thrown to the wolves 13 years ago.

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HSBC to slash post-Covid office space by 40% as profits drop by a third

Bank also reaffirms greater shift towards Asia-Pacific, where most of its earnings come from

HSBC is to reduce its office space around the world by nearly 40% as part of sweeping cost cutting designed to capitalise on new part-office-part-homeworking arrangements after the pandemic.

The decision to move to new hybrid working arrangements was announced as HSBC confirmed it was accelerating its pivot towards Asia, including China and Hong Kong, despite concerns about the political crackdown in the former British colony.

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Ex-banker Paul Mora put on Interpol wanted list in German fraud inquiry

Arrest warrant issued over alleged role in cum-ex trades that defrauded the state of million of euros

Interpol has added New Zealand citizen Paul Mora to its list of most wanted criminals, after German authorities issued an international arrest warrant over the former London banker’s alleged involvement in a multimillion euro tax fraud scheme.

Mora, 53, is one of six people charged in 2017 by Frankfurt prosecutors over the “cum-ex” scandal, a complex derivatives juggling act that siphoned taxpayer’s money from German state coffers, causing estimated damages of more than €113m.

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British banks under pressure over £45m loans to firm with links to Myanmar military

Campaigners say the deals revealed in new report are a breach of firms’ human rights responsibilities

Human rights groups are demanding that two of Britain’s biggest banks explain why they have lent tens of millions of pounds to a technology company building a telecoms network that is part-owned and used by the Myanmar military.

HSBC and Standard Chartered have loaned $60m (£44.5m) to Vietnamese telecom giant Viettel in the last four years, a period when the Myanmar military has been accused of committing war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. Viettel is a major investor in Mytel, a Myanmar mobile network that, since its launch in June 2018, has grown to become the second-biggest operator in the country with over 10 million users.

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Exiled Hong Kong legislator calls for action after HSBC bank accounts frozen

Ted Hui says move by UK’s biggest bank is act of ‘oppression’ as eight more democracy activists are arrested

A Hong Kong legislator who fled to Europe has called on regulators to investigate the actions of major banks including HSBC, after his accounts and those of his wife and parents were frozen.

Ted Hui is the latest pro-democracy figure to leave Hong Kong amid the escalating crackdown on dissent. Last week Jimmy Lai was denied bail, and Joshua Wong, Agnes Chow, and Ivan Lam were jailed. On Monday, eight people were reportedly arrested by the national security police over a small and peaceful student rally at the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) last month, including three accused of breaching the national security law.

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Hong Kong banks told to report potential breaches of security law

Transactions that could violate Beijing-imposed law should be treated the same as if financing terrorism, says guidance

Hong Kong-based banks have been told to report any transactions that they believe may violate the national security law, in new advice from the financial regulator.

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority updated its advice to companies last month, in an amended document of frequently asked questions, to say transactions suspected to be linked to the law should be treated the same as transactions suspected to be money laundering or financing terrorism.

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How HSBC got caught in a geopolitical storm over Hong Kong security law

Bank’s future remains uncertain as it finds itself under pressure from Beijing and Washington

HSBC has been a fixture of the Hong Kong economy for more than a century. However, its origins as a financial bridge between Asia and the west have placed it in the centre of a modern day geopolitical storm. Facing pressure to choose sides as Hong Kong is convulsed by the new security law imposed by Beijing and Donald Trump pursues a trade war with China, HSBC is in danger of finding itself without friends in either direction.

Headquartered in London, but dependent on Hong Kong and China for profits, HSBC has been affected by tensions between Washington and Beijing – and shareholder concern over its controversial acceptance of an authoritarian crackdown in its key market.

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