Head of China Minsheng Bank resigns after reports he faces corruption investigation

BEIJING (REUTERS) - China Minsheng Banking Corp said on Saturday that its president Mao Xiaofeng had resigned for personal reasons, hours after several Chinese media outlets reported he was being investigated by China's anti-corruption watchdog.

The reports said Mao had been taken away earlier this week by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), the ruling Communist Party's top anti-corruption body, to "assist with investigations".

Minsheng, the country's biggest private lender, posted a statement on its website saying it was aware of the reports concerning Mao and noted that the issue highlighted in the reports concerned Mao's personal affairs and was not affecting the bank's operations.

It later filed notice of Mao's resignation with the Shanghai Stock Exchange.

Reuters was unable to contact Mao.

Minsheng's earlier statement did not confirm that Mao had been taken into custody by CCDI nor whether he was facing an investigation from the corruption watchdog, and when asked for further comment a bank spokesman referred only to the statement.

According to the state-run People's Daily, Minsheng on Friday sent an internal notice to its branch employees and others, telling them to be ready to "respond to possible emergency" over the weekend. The bank's internal notice was posted on the People's Daily website.

According to a person close to Minsheng, who spoke with Reuters on condition of anonymity, the bank's board of directors was supposed to meet on Saturday for what the individual described as an "important matter".

He said the meeting was rescheduled, however, to take place on Sunday. He declined to elaborate on why the bank rescheduled the board meeting.

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