Morning Coffee: Would you join this bank as it expands in Asia?

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Private bankers in Asia can, in theory, choose from a dazzling array of expansionist employers – from giants UBS and Credit Suisse (both now focused on the region) to Swiss boutiques like UBP (in growth mode as it acquires Coutts’ international business). But would you want to work for a private bank that is just, well, small in Asia right now?

BMO, the global arm of Bank of Montreal, is joining the flood of firms looking to grow its regional private banking assets and headcount, reports Asian Investor. Myra Cridland, head of BMO private bank for Asia, says the firm will hire an undisclosed number of new relationship managers (RMs).

But it only currently has 20 RMs, putting it outside the top-20 private banks in Asia by RM headcount. Although Cridland is focused on building BMO’s product offerings, it is unlikely that many RMs from top-five firms would consider giving up their extensive and established product platforms to join an emerging firm.

Boutique private banks – firms like LGT and Pictet who have fewer than 100 Asian RMs – seem a more likely hunting ground, but only if their RMs can convince clients to make the move. BMO could potentially offer them more senior roles and more power internally as it builds its team from the ground up.


Nomura hires two DCM bankers for Asia ex-Japan. (Finance Asia)

China's Alibaba appoints former Goldman executive as president. (Straits Times)

Citi gives 7,000 Singapore employees “commemorative S$100 EZ Link cards” to mark SG50. (Business Times)

China’s response to stock rout exposes regulatory disarray. (Wall Street Journal)

China stock markets rise after fresh curbs on intraday short selling. (South China Morning Post)

AIG first in Asia to cover senior managers against internal probes. (Business Times)

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