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dArKeR Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri May-14-04 11:00 PM
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Japanese banks are struggling to reform image
Saturday, May 15, 2004,Page 12

Japanese banks, long seen as more concerned about nurturing the country's industrial titans than helping the man on the street, are trying to throw off their customer-unfriendly image.

But despite their remodelled branches, expanded product lineups and staff who are trained to be nicer, analysts say these lenders are still a long way from becoming real "service" companies -- a move that the banks hope will open to door to new sources of profit.

The main obstacle, analysts say, is a public perception that banks, rather than being money-making corporate entities, are a semi-public part of the social infrastructure set up to keep the financial system stable and that bankers are virtual bureaucrats.

"Retail comes down to dealing with individuals but encouraging people to change their mentality is an ongoing process," said Jason Rogers at Barclays Capital.
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