BoA Merrill's Asia debt head Ashish Malhotra leaves

Ashish Malhotra, head of Asia debt capital markets, leaves Bank of America Merrill Lynch less than a month after being promoted.

Ashish Malhotra, head of Asia debt capital markets at Bank of America Merrill Lynch left the firm late last week, just one month after being promoted to become the firm’s Asia debt head.

Malhotra was appointed head of Asia DCM on March 18 and, according to an internal memo released at that time, he was responsible for the firm’s investment-grade and high-yield origination business across the region. Before that, he was head of syndicate for Asia and also handled Hong Kong debt origination.

Market rumours suggest that Malhotra is headed for a rival bank, possibly Standard Chartered, which is seen as a natural destination as the firm has long been searching for a new head of Asia syndicate to replace Aaron Russell Davison, who was promoted to head of global syndicate at Standard Chartered last year.

A spokeswoman for Standard Chartered said that the bank had no comment. Bank of America Merrill Lynch also declined to comment.

Malhotra, who was based in Hong Kong, has been with Bank of America Merrill Lynch since 2005. He reported to Jason Cox and James Fleming, co-heads of Asia-Pacific global capital markets. Before BoA Merrill, he worked at Deutsche Bank.

BoA Merrill has seen a number of changes on the debt front in recent weeks. At the time of Malhotra’s promotion, the bank also announced that Devesh Ashra will join as its new head of Asia DCM syndicate along with Hital Desai, who will also join the syndicate desk. Both bankers had previously worked at Credit Suisse and are expected to join in June. Ranobir Mukherji was also named vice-chairman for Asia DCM in March.

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