Agricultural Bank President Resigns Amid Report of Demotion

  • Chairman Liu Shiyu will add role of acting president
  • Zhang leaves after being AgBank president since 1985

Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. President Zhang Yun resigned for “personal reasons,” amid a media report that he was demoted earlier by the Communist Party.

Zhang resigned from all posts at Agricultural Bank, including vice chairman, the Beijing-based lender said in a statement to the Shanghai Stock Exchange on Friday. Chairman Liu Shiyu will be acting president, China’s fourth-largest lender by market value said in a separate statement.

Zhang Yun

Photographer: Jerome Favre/Bloomberg

Zhang was taken away to assist authorities with an investigation, people familiar with the matter said on Nov. 2, without giving details on who is conducting the probe or what it’s related to. He was back in office a day later after Nanfang Daily said Zhang was demoted by the party.

The Communist Party’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection is carrying out its first broad checks on the finance industry since President Xi Jinping became the party’s head in November 2012. The summer’s stock-market rout in China has triggered investigations that have snared executives from the country’s biggest securities firms as well as top regulatory officials.

Caixin reported separately on Friday that Citic Securities Co.’s head of investment banking Chen Jun and head of global investment banking Yan Jianlin were taken away by authorities. It’s unclear whether the two are being investigated or assisting probe, the report said, citing an unidentified person.

Zhang, 56, became Agricultural Bank’s president in 2009 after holding various positions at the lender since 1985. Zhang has no differences with the board nor anything else to notify the bank’s shareholders or creditors, the company said.

— With assistance by Jun Luo

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