Mitsubishi UFJ Plans to Boost Wealth Management Segment

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Mitsubishi UFJ Financial GroupMUFG seeks to exploit Morgan Stanley's MS strong client base and its proficiency in providing solutions in order to boost revenues from its wealth management operations.

Japan's biggest bank, Mitsubishi UFJ, is focusing on other areas to drive its bottom line as a persistent negative interest rate environment in the domestic economy has been making its lending business less profitable.

Mitsubishi UFJ will be taking advantage of Morgan Stanley's expertise and experience in turning wealth management business into a major revenue contributing source by reducing risk and divesting troublesome units, per Saburo Araki, CEO of Mitsubishi UFJ Morgan Stanley Securities Co Ltd ("MUMSS").

MUMSS is a joint venture of both the companies created in 2010 as a result of Mitsubishi UFJ's $9 billion investment in Morgan Stanley at the height of a financial crisis in 2008. It is a combination of investment banking operations of the banks.

Mitsubishi UFJ is targeting wealthy Japanese clients such as actors, company founders and athletes, to lure them into higher-return products like mutual funds.

MUMSS Fined for Spoofing Market

The venture was recently slapped with a $1.97 million penalty as one of its dealers was accused of placing large volumes of buy and sell orders in August 2017 with no intention of executing them.

This practice is called "spoofing" under which an illusory market activity is created to draw investors' attention. Per Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission, Mitsubishi UFJ is thought to have made a ¥1.58 million profit from the resulting price fluctuations.

Our Take

Mitsubishi UFJ's strong capital position keeps it well poised to undertake expansion strategies. Also, its intention to enter profitable business operations bode well for long term. However, net interest income continues to remain under pressure due to unfavorable interest rates.

Shares of the company have lost 15.5% in the past three months compared with 9.7% decline of the industry .

Currently, the stock has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

A couple of better-ranked stocks from the same space are Bank of Montreal BMO and The Toronto Dominion Bank TD ,  carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here .

Bank of Montreal has witnessed an upward earnings estimate revision of 1.5% for the current year over the last 60 days. Its share price has increased 7.9% in a year's time.

Toronto Dominion's Zacks Consensus Estimate for the current year has increased 1.2% over the last 60 days. Its shares have gained 16.6% in the past 12 months.

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Morgan Stanley (MS): Free Stock Analysis Report

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. (MUFG): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: BMO , TD , MS , MUFG

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