• Jiji


Mizuho Bank President and CEO Koji Fujiwara is expected to step down this month to take responsibility for a series of system glitches that hit the Japanese bank this year, sources familiar with the matter said Thursday.

In February, the bank said Fujiwara, 59, would become chairman on April 1, a plan that has been put on hold due to the four system failures it has faced since late February. The appointment is likely to be canceled, the sources said.

Managing Executive Officer Masahiko Kato, 56, will replace Fujiwara as president and CEO at the bank, the sources said.

An independent committee tasked with investigating the cause of the glitches is likely to release a report as early as next week.

The Financial Services Agency plans to issue a business improvement order to the Mizuho Financial Group Inc. unit after reviewing the report.

Mizuho Financial President and Group CEO Tatsufumi Sakai, 61, is expected to take a sharp pay cut as a disciplinary measure, the sources said. Deputy President Satoshi Ishii, 57, is likely to quit as chief information officer, they said.

The system glitches included one in which customers were forced to wait for a long time before retrieving their cash cards and bankbooks stuck inside automated teller machines. Mizuho Bank also experienced large-scale system failures in 2002 and 2011.

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