Malaysia banks gear up to tie merger knot

Malaysia's most ambitious financial sector consolidation takes shape from January when most of its banks finally tie the knot in government-ordered unions to fight foreign competitors. But the great marriage rush hasn't enamoured analysts with the country's banking shares as they think fresh merger snags, concern over growing bad debts and the prospects of less robust earnings are clouding the sector's outlook.

"We are underweight on banks," said a fund manager at CMS Dresdner Asset Management