Monday, January 9, 2012

Morning roundup: Bank of America cutting jobs in Asia

Here's a look at this morning's banking and finance news:

  • Bank of America Merrill Lynch has laid off its co-head of mergers and acquisitions for Asia, the Wall Street Journal reports. The move comes as the investment bank is shedding about 20 percent of its managing directors on the continent as the "outlook sours," Reuters says.

  • Some banks are charging customers fees of $50 for not maintaining minimum balances, which some analysts call unprecedented, the Boston Globe reports.

  • An international organization of bank regulators said it would allow some leeway on liquidity - that despite efforts to push big banks to boost capital and short-term liquidity, that did not mean lenders would never be allowed to dip below required levels, the New York Times writes.

  • A Bloomberg op-ed says it's important to encourage "the right kind of greed" among banks. The piece lays out a few ways to balance natural greed with capital requirements so that greed can lead to productive risk-taking and competition.

  • Lower-income customers might have fewer banking options as a result of government regulations aimed at controlling bank fees, the Christian Science Monitor writes. The article says 30 million consumers make up the "world of the unbanked and underbanked."