Daily Dispatches: Santander targets China

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Santander, the eurozone's biggest bank, is planning a Chinese joint venture with China Construction Bank in a cautious first step towards filling the Asian gap in its global retail network. The Spanish bank declined to comment on Wednesday, but banking sources in Spain and China said the venture - yet to be formally signed by the two sides or approved by the Chinese authorities - would focus on rural banking and automobile finance. (Financial Times)

CBA is eyeing potential acquisitions in Asia and negotiating new strategic partnerships as part of an aggressive push into the region. A source close to CBA told BusinessDaily the group was finalising an alliance with an unnamed Asian bank which would involve an initial investment of at least $100m. (Herald Sun)

Mizuho Financial Group is considering options to boost its capital, including what would be Japan's first rights offering, three people with knowledge of the matter said. (Bloomberg)

DBS Group Chairman Koh Boon Hwee says the global economic recovery remains fragile and that many customers are cautious on their investment plans. (938 Live)

Australia's big four banks are emerging from the global financial crisis in "relatively good shape", but they still face a number of challenges, particularly with asset quality, a major report from Fitch has found. (The Australian)