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A glimmer of hope for Bosnia banks

A glimmer of hope for Bosnia's banks

June 2, 2014

The complicated geographical and political make-up of Bosnia-Herzegovina, combined with its struggling economy and low purchasing power, makes life difficult for its overcrowded banking market. However, hope is on the horizon as economic growth picks up and looming elections bring promise of a more investor-friendly financial system.

Road to riches banking services for women

Road to riches: banking services for women

June 2, 2014

With a global aggregate income of $12,500bn, and spending power beyond that, women represent one of the world’s largest banking markets. Yet most banks still seem unwilling or unable to service the unique needs of their female customers.

Losing the human touch

Smart machines: clever enough to replace bankers?

June 2, 2014

Computers have reached such a level of sophistication that they can now outperform their human counterparts at some tasks, a fact that has not gone unnoticed in the banking community. But, while smart machines are increasingly being utilised in customer service and data analysis capacities, advocates of these new technologies maintain that they are designed to complement rather than replace the traditional workforce.

Testing times for Turkish banks

Testing times for Turkish banks

May 1, 2014

The macroeconomic climate is taking its toll on Turkey's banks, with many predicting a difficult year for the industry. Growth avenues still remain, however, in the commercial loans and small and medium-sized enterprise sectors, not to mention the huge potential of tapping the country's large unbanked population.

Top banks in Japan

Japan's banks return to health, if not profitability

April 22, 2014

After years of rationalisation and restructuring following the Asian financial crisis in the 1990s, Japan's largest banks – Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Mizuho and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group – are much healthier than their Western and Chinese counterparts, but they are still struggling to increase profitability.

Putting Iraq back on the banking map

Putting Iraq back on the banking map

April 1, 2014

After years of neglect, the Iraqi banking sector offers promise once again. Mobile banking, trade finance and infrastructure financing opportunities are proving attractive to existing lenders and the wave of new entrants looking to break into the market. But, before the tide can finally turn, there are regulatory issues that need addressing.

A new-look Portugal

A leaner look for Portugal's banks

April 1, 2014

Portugal's banks have undergone a radical transformation in the past few years, emerging from the country's economic crisis better capitalised, leaner and more efficient than ever. Profitability, however, is yet to recover. 

Philippines banks looking to adapt and thrive

Philippines banks looking to adapt and thrive

April 1, 2014

A strong economy and good governance have helped maintain healthy profitability at most of the Philippines' largest lenders, but with plans to establish a semi-integrated regional banking industry among the Association of South-east Asian Nations members – which would pit local institutions against much more mature banks – many are looking to diversify, both in terms of the products they offer and the customer base they serve.

An end to Spains pain

Will 2014 bring an end to Spain's pain?

March 3, 2014

There is an optimistic feeling among the CEOs of Spain's leading banks, as profits and domestic conditions improve. With the European Central Bank's imminent asset quality review expected to be passed with flying colours, the country's lenders are now looking beyond survival and towards growth, both domestically and internationally.

MINT banks face fresh challenges

MINT banks face fresh challenges

March 3, 2014

If the early 2000s were all about the emerging economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China, now attention is shifting to the up-and-coming countries of Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey – the MINTs. And with rapid economic growth predicted, retail banks in these countries will be under enormous pressure to keep up.

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