December 15, 2017 / 4:15 AM / a year ago

Japan anti-trust watchdog to approve Daishi, Hokuetsu banks' merger -Nikkei

TOKYO, Dec 15 (Reuters) - Japan’s Fair Trade Commission has decided to approve the merger of Daishi Bank Ltd and Hokuetsu Bank Ltd after a prolonged review by the anti-trust watchdog, the Nikkei business daily reported on its website, without citing sources.

The two banks, both based in Niigata prefecture on the Sea of Japan coast, in October postponed their original merger plans by six months to October 2018 due to the delay.

A shrinking population and the central bank’s negative interest-rate policy have created a tough business environment for Japan’s roughly 100 so-called regional banks, prompting some to merge or take other steps to shore up their operations. (Reporting by Junko Fujita; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim)

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