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China Bank Majors Plan Bond Funding Spree to Plug Capital Shortfall

China Bank Majors Plan Bond Funding Spree to Plug Capital Shortfall

(12 April 2023 – China) Chinese bank majors are planning at least 40 billion yuan (US$5.8 billion) of bond sales to plug a major fund shortfall ahead of a 2025 deadline to meet global capital requirements.

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) and its three closest rivals including Bank of China (BOC), China Construction Bank (CCB) and Agricultural Bank of China are planning to tap domestic debt markets to sell a new category of total loss-absorbing capacity bonds as soon as the end of Q2 2023.

Each bank is targeting at least 10 billion yuan (US$1.46 billion), however exact amounts have not been finalised.

The move comes after Swiss regulators shocked investors with the wipeout of Additional Tier 1 bonds (AT1s) issued by Credit Suisse during its rescue

“The recent risk events highlight the importance of having strong capital buffers and total loss absorbing capability, so the big banks may feel more determined to close the gap,” said, Fitch Ratings Director of Financial Institutions, Vivian Xue.

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