ANZ Bank Said to Hire Coal Trading Team From Thailand’s PTT

Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. hired a coal trading team from a unit of Thailand’s PTT Pcl to boost sales and marketing staff, according to a person familiar with the personnel changes.

ANZ hired the team from Tiger Energy Trading Pte, a unit of PTT’s Sakari Resources Ltd., which markets coal from the Sebuku and Jembayan thermal coal mines in Indonesia, said the person, who asked not to be named because the details are private. ANZ will also employ Perth-based Nicholas Stephens, Sakari’s managing director of marketing, the person said.

State-controlled PTT, which completed the takeover of Sakari earlier this year, is shutting Tiger Energy’s office in Perth and will take over its trading activities, PTT’s Chief Financial Officer Surong Bulakul said in a phone interview.

“We are closing down the Perth office as it is no longer strategically relevant to our operations, which are now concentrated in Singapore and Jakarta,” Surong, who has about 20 years of oil trading experience, said by phone yesterday. “I will take over in terms of trade.”

Stephens’s team oversaw sales of 11 million metric tons last year, according to Sakari’s annual report. The takeover of Sakari valued the Singaporean coal producer and trading unit at S$2.2 billion ($1.8 billion). Stephen Ries, a Melbourne-based spokesman for ANZ, declined to comment on new hires.

The world’s 10 largest banks collectively pared global commodities staff this year to the lowest level since at least 2009, according to analytics firm Coalition. While most financial institutions have reduced commodity trading teams, ABN Amro Group NV this week said it plans to add staff as China increases consumption of energy and metals.

The economy in China, the largest user of energy and copper, will expand 7.5 percent next year, the median of economists’ forecasts tracked by Bloomberg shows.

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