Shunned by Korea? Global banks should shrug

Global investment banks missed out on the Korean government’s latest stake sale. There’s reason to think they will not mourn for long.

As South Korea unveiled the details of its long-stalled plan to privatise one of the country’s biggest banks this week, international bankers barely murmured. The reason was simple  none of them were involved in the transaction.

The privatisation of Woori Bank, Korea’s third largest lender by assets, was seen as one of the most lucrative deals for investment bankers in years. The deal ticked all the boxes for fee-hungry investment bankers it was big, it was high-profile, and it offered the bragging rights that can bolster a reputation.

But when the terms of the government's 30% stake sale in Woori emerged on...

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