June 15, 2017 / 8:08 AM / in 5 months

China asks banks to suspend dealings with Anbang: Bloomberg

BEIJING (Reuters) - Chinese authorities have asked banks to suspend business dealings with Anbang Insurance Group, Bloomberg reported on Thursday, a day after the insurer said its chairman had stepped aside, amid reports he had been detained.

FILE PHOTO: The headquarters building of Anbang Insurance Group are pictured in Beijing, China, August 25, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Photo

The Bloomberg report cited an unnamed source and did not give details on what type of business dealings authorities asked banks to suspend with Anbang.

A spokesman for the insurer said Anbang Insurance Group’s products are still being sold through bank channels.

Anbang, one of China’s most aggressive buyers of overseas assets, said on Wednesday that Wu Xiaohui was temporarily unable to fulfill his duties. Last week, the company denied reports that Wu had been barred from leaving China.

Last month, China’s insurance regulator barred the group’s Anbang Life Insurance Co from applying to issue new products for three months.

Anbang Life was cited for “disrupting market order” by designing a product that bypassed regulations aimed at curbing growth of short-term, risky universal life insurance products, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission said in a notice in early May.

China’s banking regulator did not immediately respond to a faxed request for comment from Reuters.

Reporting by Tony Munroe; Editing by Ian Geoghegan

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