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OCBC Securities

Singapore’s OCBC Bank can be overshadowed by its bigger rival DBS Bank, which is among the most recognized financial institutions globally, and sometimes also UOB, another local competitor, in the city-state’s capital markets.

However, over the past year, OCBC Bank – which offers brokerage services through OCBC Securities – and its two main rivals all suffered setbacks.

DBS faced three major digital outages within 18 months – the latest was in early May 2023 – which disrupted access to its online banking services, as well as its investment platform and brokerage DBS Vickers.

Brokerage UOB Kay Hian, owned by UOB, was fined S$375,000 ($280,000) in August 2022 by the Monetary Authority of Singapore for allegedly failing to adhere to securities regulations and for lax controls in anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism. The Singapore Exchange followed in December by banning UOB Kay Hian from acting as an issue manager or full sponsor of IPOs and reverse takeovers on the local bourse.

OCBC Bank had its troubles, too, though perhaps not as severe as those of DBS and UOB. It was caught up in a spoofed SMS phishing scam in December 2021: as a result, the MAS imposed an additional capital requirement of S$330 million on the bank in May last year.