In other instances, prosecutors may not say exactly what they’re investigating when they ask for transaction records. In that case, it’s up to the financial institution to request more information or try to figure it out on its own.

Paying for abortion services with cash is one possible way to avoid detection, even if it isn’t possible for people ordering pills online. Many abortion funds pay on behalf of people who need financial help.

But cash and electronic transfers of money are not entirely foolproof.

“Even if you are paying with cash, the amount of residual information that can be used to reveal health status and pregnancy status is fairly significant,” said Ms. Stepanovich, referring to potential bread crumbs such as the use of a retailer’s loyalty program or location tracking on a mobile phone when making a cash purchase.

In some cases, users may inadvertently give up sensitive information themselves through apps that track and share their financial behavior.

“The purchase of a pregnancy test on an app where financial history is public is probably the biggest red flag,” Ms. Stepanovich said.

Other advocates mentioned the possibility of using prepaid cards in fixed amounts, like the kinds that people can buy off a rack in a drugstore. Cryptocurrency, they added, usually does leave enough of a trail that achieving anonymity is challenging.

One thing that every expert emphasized is the lack of certainty. But there is an emerging gut feeling that corporations will be in the spotlight at least as much as judges.

“Now, these payment companies are going to be front and center in the fight,” Ms. Caraballo said.

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Legal clashes await U.S. companies covering workers’ abortion costs

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June 27 (Reuters) – A growing number of large U.S. companies have said they will cover travel costs for employees who must leave their home states to get abortions, but these new policies could expose businesses to lawsuits and even potential criminal liability, legal experts said.

Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O), Apple Inc (AAPL.O), Lyft Inc (LYFT.O), Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) and JPMorgan Chase & Co (JPM.N) were among companies that announced plans to provide those benefits through their health insurance plans in anticipation of Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling that had legalized abortion nationwide. read more

Within an hour of the decision being released, Conde Nast Chief Executive Roger Lynch sent a memo to staff announcing a travel reimbursement policy and calling the court’s ruling “a crushing blow to reproductive rights.” Walt Disney Co (DIS.N) unveiled a similar policy on Friday, telling employees that it recognizes the impact of the abortion ruling but remains committed to providing comprehensive access to quality healthcare, according to a spokesman. read more

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Health insurer Cigna Corp (CI.N), Paypal Holdings Inc (PYPL.O), Alaska Airlines Inc (DKS.N) also announced reimbursement policies on Friday.

Abortion restrictions that were already on the books in 13 states went into effect as a result of Friday’s ruling and at least a dozen other Republican-led states are expected to ban abortion.

The court’s decision, driven by its conservative majority, upheld a Mississippi law that bans abortion after 15 weeks. Meanwhile, some Democratic-led states are moving to bolster access to abortion.

Companies will have to navigate that patchwork of state laws and are likely to draw the ire of anti-abortion groups and Republican-led states if they adopt policies supportive of employees having abortions.

State lawmakers in Texas have already threatened Citigroup Inc (C.N) and Lyft, which had earlier announced travel reimbursement policies, with legal repercussions. A group of Republican lawmakers in a letter last month to Lyft Chief Executive Logan Green said Texas “will take swift and decisive action” if the ride-hailing company implements the policy.

The legislators also outlined a series of abortion-related proposals, including a bill that would bar companies from doing business in Texas if they pay for residents of the state to receive abortions elsewhere.

LAWSUITS LOOMING

It is likely only a matter of time before companies face lawsuits from states or anti-abortion campaigners claiming that abortion-related payments violate state bans on facilitating or aiding and abetting abortions, according to Robin Fretwell Wilson, a law professor at the University of Illinois and expert on healthcare law.

“If you can sue me as a person for carrying your daughter across state lines, you can sue Amazon for paying for it,” Wilson said.

Amazon, Citigroup and other companies that have announced reimbursement policies did not respond to requests for comment. A Lyft spokesperson said: “We believe access to healthcare is essential and transportation should never be a barrier to that access.”

For many large companies that fund their own health plans, the federal law regulating employee benefits will provide crucial cover in civil lawsuits over their reimbursement policies, several lawyers and other legal experts said.

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) prohibits states from adopting requirements that “relate to” employer-sponsored health plans. Courts have for decades interpreted that language to bar state laws that dictate what health plans can and cannot cover.

ERISA regulates benefit plans that are funded directly by employers, known as self-insured plans. In 2021, 64% of U.S. workers with employer-sponsored health insurance were covered by self-insured plans, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Any company sued over an abortion travel reimbursement requirement will likely cite ERISA as a defense, according to Katy Johnson, senior counsel for health policy at the American Benefits Council trade group. And that will be a strong argument, she said, particularly for businesses with general reimbursement policies for necessary medical-related travel rather than those that single out abortion.

Johnson said reimbursements for other kinds of medical-related travel, such as visits to hospitals designated “centers of excellence,” are already common even though policies related to abortion are still relatively rare.

“While this may seem new, it’s not in the general sense and the law already tells us how to handle it,” Johnson said.

LIMITS

The argument has its limits. Fully-insured health plans, in which employers purchase coverage through a commercial insurer, cover about one-third of workers with insurance and are regulated by state law and not ERISA.

Most small and medium-sized U.S. businesses have fully-insured plans and could not argue that ERISA prevents states from limiting abortion coverage.

And, ERISA cannot prevent states from enforcing criminal laws, such as those in several states that make it a crime to aid and abet abortion. So employers who adopt reimbursement policies are vulnerable to criminal charges from state and local prosecutors.

But since most criminal abortion laws have not been enforced in decades, since Roe was decided, it is unclear whether officials would attempt to prosecute companies, according to Danita Merlau, a Chicago-based lawyer who advises companies on benefits issues.

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Reporting by Daniel Wiessner in Albany, New York, Editing by Alexia Garamfalvi, Grant McCool and Bill Berkrot

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Wall St rises on gains in banks, strong retail sales data

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  • Walmart slides after cutting earnings forecast
  • April retail sales rise in line with estimates
  • S&P 500 +2.02%, Nasdaq +2.76%, Dow +1.34%

May 17 (Reuters) – Wall Street finished sharply higher on Tuesday, lifted by Apple, Tesla and other megacap growth stocks after strong retail sales in April eased worries about slowing economic growth.

Ten of the 11 major S&P sector indexes advanced, with financials (.SPSY), materials (.SPLRCM), consumer discretionary (.SPLRCD) and technology (.SPLRCT) all gaining more than 2%.

Investors were cheered by data showing U.S. retail sales increased 0.9% in April as consumers bought motor vehicles amid an improvement in supply and frequented restaurants. read more

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Recently punished shares of Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O), Apple Inc (AAPL.O), Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) and Amazon (AMZN.O) gained between 2% and 5.1%, driving the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq higher.

Tuesday’s broad rally followed weeks of selling on the U.S. stock market that last week saw the S&P 500 sink to its lowest level since March 2021.

“The largest pockets of stocks that investors tend to buy have been essentially beaten up. They’re either in correction or bear market territory,” said Sylvia Jablonski, chief investment officer of Defiance ETF. “I think investors are looking at these opportunities to buy on the dip, and I suspect that today is a good day to do that.”

The S&P 500 Banks index (.SPXBK) jumped 3.8%, with Citigroup (C.N) climbing almost 8% after Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRKa.N) disclosed a nearly $3 billion investment in the U.S. lender.

Another set of economic data showed industrial production accelerated 1.1% last month, higher than estimates of 0.5%, and faster than a 0.9% advance in March. read more

“This is consistent with continued economic growth in the second quarter and not a recession underway,” said Bill Adams, chief economist for Comerica Bank in Dallas.

The U.S. Federal Reserve will “keep pushing” to tighten U.S. monetary policy until it is clear inflation is declining, Fed Chair Jerome Powell said at an event on Tuesday. read more

Traders are pricing in an 85% chance of a 50-basis point rate hike in June.

The S&P 500 climbed 2.02% to end the session at 4,088.85 points.

The Nasdaq gained 2.76% to 11,984.52 points, while Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.34% to 32,654.59 points.

S&P 500’s busiest trades

Underscoring Wall Street’s recent volatility, the S&P 500 has gained or lost 2% or more in a session some 39 times so far in 2022, compared to 24 times in all of 2021.

Walmart Inc (WMT.N) tumbled 11.4% after the retail giant cut its annual profit forecast, signaling a hit to its margins. That marked the biggest one-day percentage drop for Walmart’s stock since 1987. read more

Retailers Costco (COST.O), Target (TGT.N) and Dollar Tree (DLTR.O) fell between 0.8% and 3.2%.

United Airlines Holdings Inc (UAL.O) gained 7.9% after the carrier lifted its current-quarter revenue forecast, boosting shares of Delta Air (DAL.N), American Airlines (AAL.O) and Spirit Airlines (SAVE.N). read more

A positive first-quarter earnings season has been overshadowed by worries about the conflict in Ukraine, soaring inflation, COVID-19 lockdowns in China and aggressive policy tightening by central banks.

The S&P 500 is down about 14% so far in 2022, and the Nasdaq is off around 23%, hit by tumbling growth stocks.

U.S.-listed Chinese stocks jumped on hopes that China will ease its crackdown on the technology sector. read more

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 2.92-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 3.19-to-1 ratio favored advancers.

The S&P 500 posted one new 52-week high and 30 new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 24 new highs and 126 new lows.

Volume on U.S. exchanges was 12.0 billion shares, compared with a 13.3 billion average over the last 20 trading days.

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Reporting by Amruta Khandekar and Devik Jain in Bengaluru, and Noel Randewich in Oakland, Calif.; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Lisa Shumaker

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Wall Street Banks Are Getting Flexible on Working From Home

When Tom Naratil arrived on Wall Street in the 1980s, work-life balance didn’t really exist. For most bankers of his generation, working long hours while missing out on family time wasn’t just necessary to get ahead, it was necessary to not be left behind.

But Mr. Naratil, now president of the Swiss bank UBS in the Americas, doesn’t see why the employees of today should have to make the same trade-offs — at the cost of their personal happiness and the company’s bottom line.

Employees with the flexibility to skip “horrible commutes” and work from home more often are simply happier and more productive, Mr. Naratil said. “They feel better, they feel like we trust them more, they’ve got a better work-life balance, and they’re producing more for us — that’s a win-win for everybody.”

Welcome to a kinder, gentler Wall Street.

Much of the banking industry, long a bellwether for corporate America, dismissed remote working as a pandemic blip, even leaning on workers to keep coming in when closings turned Midtown Manhattan into a ghost town. But with many Wall Street workers resisting a return to the office two years later and the competition for banking talent heating up, many managers are coming around on work-from-home — or at least acknowledging it’s not a fight they can win.

rolled out its plan last month to allow 10 percent of its 20,500 U.S. employees to work remotely all the time and offer hybrid schedules for three-quarters of its workers.

“Talent will move, and it’s not only about a paycheck,” he said.

said. Wells Fargo started bringing back most of its 249,000-person work force in mid-March with what it calls a “hybrid flexible model” — for many corporate employees, that entails a minimum of three days a week in the office, while groups that cater to the bank’s technology needs will be able to come in less often.

BNY Mellon, which has nearly 50,000 employees, is allowing teams to determine their own mix of in-person and remote work. And it introduced a two-week “work from anywhere” policy for people in certain roles and locations. “The energy around the office has been palpable” as employees eagerly map out their plans, said Garrett Marquis, a BNY Mellon spokesman.

Moelis & Company, a boutique investment bank, has strongly encouraged its almost 1,000 staff members to come to the office Monday through Thursday, but with added “intraday flexibility” over their hours, said Elizabeth Crain, the company’s chief operating officer. That might mean dropping children off at school in the morning, or taking the train during daylight hours for safety reasons, she said. The new approach fosters teamwork and enables employees to learn from one another in person, while also giving them more control over their schedules.

Ms. Crain said everyone was much more flexible. “We all know we can deliver,” she said.

Ms. Crain, who has worked in the financial industry for more than three decades, recently committed to something that would have been unthinkable before the pandemic: a weekly 9 a.m. session with a personal trainer near her office. She said she hoped that breaking out of the confines of the traditional workday sent a message to employees that they were trusted to get the job done while making time for their personal priorities.

said last month.

But he and Goldman’s David Solomon have welcomed efforts to get workers back into Manhattan offices. Mr. Solomon echoed Mayor Eric Adams at a talk at Goldman’s headquarters in March, saying it was “time to come back.”

Andrea Williams, a spokeswoman for Goldman Sachs, said returning to the office “is core to our apprenticeship culture” and client-focused business. “We are better together than apart, especially as an employer of choice for those in the beginning stage of their career,” she said.

For months, Mr. Dimon has made a similar argument at JPMorgan — and continued to even as he said about half its employees would work from home at least some of the time.

“Most professionals learn their job through an apprenticeship model, which is almost impossible to replicate in the Zoom world,” he wrote. JPMorgan has hired more than 80,000 workers during the pandemic, he said, and it strives to train them properly.

building a new headquarters in Midtown that will be the home base for up to 14,000 workers, will move to a more “open seating” arrangement.

Banks outside New York are also adapting: KeyCorp, which is based in Cleveland, hasn’t set a specific return-to-office date, but expects half its staff to eventually show up four or five days a week. Another 30 percent will probably come in for one to three days, with the ability to work from different offices. And 20 percent will work from home, albeit with in-person training and team-building events.

The new setup is “uncharted territory” that is necessary to keep the work force engaged, said Key’s chief executive, Chris Gorman. While he comes in every day and is a big believer in face-to-face meetings, Mr. Gorman said he had avoided a heavy-handed approach that could alienate employees and prompt them to look elsewhere.

Mr. Naratil, the UBS president, is also a believer in in-person gatherings — he still spends most of his week at UBS’s office in Weehawken, N.J. — but he said the great remote-work experiment of the last two years had debunked the myth that employees were less productive at home. In fact, he said, they are more productive.

The increasingly hybrid workplace has forced leaders to connect with their teams in new ways, like virtual happy hours, Mr. Naratil said. The rank and file have shown that they can rise to the occasion, and the onus is on bosses to attract workers back to physical spaces to generate new ideas and strengthen relationships.

Managers, he said, need to have a good answer when their employees ask the simple question: “Why should I be in the office?”

“It’s not ‘Because I told you to,’” he said. “That’s not the answer.”

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As Offices Ease Covid Safety Measures, Workers Worry

Wall Street has been quick to shift its Covid-19 protocols after New York State dropped its indoor mask mandate last month. At JPMorgan Chase, masks are now voluntary for vaccinated and unvaccinated employees, and the firm will discontinue mandatory Covid testing as well as the reporting of Covid infections by April 4. At Morgan Stanley, where vaccines are required to enter the office, the mask requirement was dropped early last month.

Goldman Sachs dropped mask requirements on Feb. 14, though it still requires testing. Citigroup dropped its mask requirement last week. Wells Fargo has maintained more rigid Covid protocols than some of its finance peers, requiring unvaccinated employees to wear a mask at all times unless they are eating, drinking or alone in an enclosed room.

Other industries that have made a push for in-person work, such as real estate, have also reformulated their Covid guidelines in recent weeks. BlackRock, which has asked its 7,600 U.S. employees to return to the office at least three days a week, no longer requires masks in its U.S. offices, though employees have to be vaccinated to enter the building and are asked to test twice a week. Prologis, a logistics real estate firm, said its office mask guidelines were consistent with local regulations. Guardian Life Insurance, which has about 6,300 U.S. employees, does not have an in-office mask requirement in most areas of the country.

Still, some tech companies are holding firm on Covid safety protocols. Google requires any unvaccinated employees with approval to enter its offices to test regularly and wear a mask. Meta, the parent company of Facebook, requires anyone entering the office to be vaccinated — including with a booster starting March 28 — and follows local guidelines on masking.

Intuit announced on Wednesday that starting on May 16, its 11,500 U.S. employees would return to the office in a hybrid model, in which teams determine how many days per week workers should be in person. While the company requires anyone entering its offices to be vaccinated, it follows local and state guidelines on masking, meaning masks are not required in any of its U.S. offices.

“We’ve tried to stress that people should feel comfortable doing whatever feels best for them,” said Chris Glennon, Intuit’s vice president of global real estate and workplace. “We are seeing some folks masking, particularly in public areas, but by and large most are not masking.”

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PropertyGuru Successfully Completes Business Combination With Bridgetown 2 Holdings

SINGAPORE & HONG KONG–(BUSINESS WIRE)–PropertyGuru Pte. Ltd. (“PropertyGuru” or “the Company”), Southeast Asia’s leading1 property technology (“PropTech”) company, today completed its previously announced business combination with Bridgetown 2 Holdings Limited (“Bridgetown 2”) (NASDAQ: BTNB), a special purpose acquisition company formed by Pacific Century Group (“Pacific Century”) and Thiel Capital LLC (“Thiel Capital”). The business combination was approved by Bridgetown 2 stockholders in an Extraordinary General Meeting of Company Shareholders held on March 15, 2022.

PropertyGuru Group Limited’s (“PubCo”) ordinary shares are expected to begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) on March 18, 2022 under the ticker symbol “PGRU”.

“We are thrilled to have successfully completed our business combination with Bridgetown 2, which provides additional capital to pursue organic and strategic growth, and will accelerate our ability to access capital markets in pursuit of delivering world-class solutions for our customers,” said Hari V. Krishnan, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, PropertyGuru Group. “Over the past 15 years PropertyGuru has helped shape the PropTech industry in Southeast Asia and introduced many first solutions for property seekers, agents, and developers that enabled digitalization of the property industry. As evidenced by the 23% increase in our 2021 revenue – we are entering our next post-Covid phase of growth with significant momentum.

“As we look ahead, we will continue to invest in technology and expand our services and offerings to build on our leading positions in Singapore, Vietnam, Malaysia and Thailand.1 Southeast Asia’s real estate market is beginning to recover from the pandemic and as the region’s increasingly affluent and digitally enabled population moves to urban centers, PropertyGuru is well-positioned to benefit from these long-term trends.”

Southeast Asia is estimated to be the world’s fourth largest economy by 20302, driven by favourable long-term macroeconomic dynamics, creating significant opportunities for PropertyGuru – which has an addressable market of US$8.1 billion according to Frost & Sullivan. Through its continued investments, the Company is positioned to stay ahead of the evolving market demand and extend its leadership position as the region’s property markets recover from the pandemic.

“PropertyGuru is digitally transforming a traditional real estate market in Southeast Asia to create a trusted and transparent online property marketplace,” said Matt Danzeisen, Chairman, Bridgetown 2. “We believe PropertyGuru is just scratching the surface in the world’s most dynamic and fastest growing region, and we are excited to partner with Hari and his talented team to create lasting value for our shareholders, employees, customers and partners.”

Transaction Details

The completion of the business combination values PropertyGuru at an enterprise value of ~US$1.36 billion and an equity value of ~US$1.61 billion.

PropertyGuru received ~US$254 million in gross proceeds through the contribution of US$122 million of cash held in Bridgetown 2’s trust account, a concurrent US$100 million private placement (“PIPE”) of common stock anchored by Baillie Gifford, Naya, REA Group, Akaris Global Partners, and one of Malaysia’s largest asset managers, priced at US$10.00 per share. REA Group also invested an additional US$32 million. In addition, KKR, TPG Group and REA Group rolled 100% of their equity into PropertyGuru, demonstrating their continued commitment to the Company’s growth strategy.

Advisors

Merrill Lynch (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. served as exclusive financial advisor to PropertyGuru. Latham & Watkins LLP and Allen & Gledhill LLP served as legal advisors to PropertyGuru.

Merrill Lynch (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., Citigroup Global Markets Inc., KKR Capital Markets Asia Limited and TPG Capital BD, LLC served as placement agents to Bridgetown 2. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP and Rajah & Tann Singapore LLP served as legal advisors to Bridgetown 2.

Ringing the Bell at the NYSE

On March 18, PropertyGuru’s Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Hari V. Krishnan will ring the NYSE opening bell at 9:30 a.m. Eastern Time (9:30 p.m. Singapore Time). He will be joined on stage by PropertyGuru’s Leadership team, Founders, Board and Bridgetown 2’s Chairman and CEO. The bell-ringing ceremony will be livestreamed to its gala listing event in Singapore and available on NYSE’s website here: https://www.nyse.com/bell.

PropertyGuru will commemorate its listing by opening the doors to the Company’s five Southeast Asian markets through live-stream door installations between New York and its home markets, that will be set up at the NYSE’s Experience Square. The event will take place at 10:15a.m. Eastern Time.

About PropertyGuru Group

PropertyGuru Group is Southeast Asia’s leading property technology company1, and the preferred destination for over 50 million property seekers to find their dream home, every month. PropertyGuru and its group companies empower property seekers with more than 3.3 million real estate listings, in-depth insights, and solutions that enable them to make confident property decisions across Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

PropertyGuru.com.sg was launched in 2007 and has helped to drive the Singapore property market online and has made property search transparent for the property seeker. Over the decade, the Group has grown into a high-growth technology company with a robust portfolio of leading property portals across its core markets company; award-winning mobile apps; a high quality developer sales enablement platform, PropertyGuru FastKey (https://www.propertygurugroup.com/fastkey/); mortgage marketplace PropertyGuru Finance (https://www.propertyguru.com.sg/mortgage/home-loan); and a host of other property offerings including Awards (https://www.asiapropertyawards.com/en/), events and publications across Asia.

For more information, please visit: https://www.propertygurugroup.com/; https://www.linkedin.com/company/propertyguru/

Key Performance Metrics

Engagement Market Share is the average monthly engagement for websites owned by PropertyGuru as compared to average monthly engagement for a basket of peers calculated over the relevant period. Engagement is calculated as the number of visits to a website during a period multiplied by the average amount of time spent on that website for the same period, in each case based on data from SimilarWeb.

Number of real estate listings is calculated as the number of listings created during the month for Vietnam and total listings at the end of the previous month for other markets.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements in this press release may constitute “forward-looking” statements and information, within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and the safe harbor provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 that relate to PropertyGuru’s current expectations and views of future events. In some cases, these forward-looking statements can be identified by words or phrases such as “outlook,” “believes,” “expects,” “potential,” “continues,” “may,” “will,” “should,” “could,” “seeks,” “predicts,” “intends,” “trends,” “plans,” “estimates,” “anticipates” or the negative version of these words or other comparable words.

These forward-looking statements are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions, some of which are beyond our control. In addition, these forward-looking statements, including statements regarding our future results of operations and financial position, planned products and services, business strategy and plans, objectives of management for future operations, market size and growth opportunities, competitive position and technological and market trends, reflect our current views with respect to future events and are not a guarantee of future performance. Actual outcomes may differ materially from the information contained in the forward-looking statements as a result of a number of factors, including, without limitation, the following: changes in domestic and foreign business, market, financial, political and legal conditions; the ability of PropertyGuru to grow and manage growth profitably and retain its key employees including its chief executive officer and executive team; failure to realize the anticipated benefits of PropertyGuru’s completed business combination; risk relating to the uncertainty of the projected financial information with respect to PropertyGuru; PropertyGuru’s ability to attract new and retain existing customers in a cost effective manner; competitive pressures in and any disruption to the industry in which PropertyGuru and its subsidiaries (the “Group”) operates; the Group’s ability to achieve profitability despite a history of losses; the Group’s ability to implement its growth strategies and manage its growth; customers of the Group continuing to make valuable contributions to its platform, the Group’s ability to meet consumer expectations; the success of the Group’s new product or service offerings; the Group’s ability to produce accurate forecasts of its operating and financial results; the Group’s ability to attract traffic to its websites; the Group’s ability to assess property values accurately; the Group’s internal controls; fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates; the Group’s ability to raise capital; media coverage of the Group; the Group’s ability to obtain insurance coverage; changes in the regulatory environments (such as anti-trust laws, foreign ownership restrictions and tax regimes) of the countries in which the Group operates, general economic conditions in the countries in which the Group operates, the Group’s ability to attract and retain management and skilled employees, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the business of the Group, the success of the Group’s strategic investments and acquisitions, changes in the Group’s relationship with its current customers, suppliers and service providers, disruptions to information technology systems and networks, the Group’s ability to grow and protect its brand and the Group’s reputation, the Group’s ability to protect its intellectual property; changes in regulation and other contingencies; the Group’s ability to achieve tax efficiencies of its corporate structure and intercompany arrangements; potential and future litigation that the Group may be involved in; unanticipated losses, write-downs or write-offs, restructuring and impairment or other charges, taxes or other liabilities that may be incurred or required subsequent to, or in connection with, the completed business combination and technological advancements in the Group’s industry, as well as and other risk factors set forth in the section titled “Risk Factors” in our Prospectus filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on February 15, 2022, and other documents filed with or furnished to the SEC.

The forward-looking statements contained in this document are subject to a number of factors, risks and uncertainties, some of which are not currently known to PropertyGuru or Bridgetown 2. You should carefully consider the foregoing factors and the other risks and uncertainties described in the “Risk Factors” section of PubCo’s registration statement on Form F-4, the proxy statement/ prospectus therein, Bridgetown 2’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q and other documents filed by PubCo or Bridgetown 2 from time to time with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

These filings identify and address other important risks and uncertainties that could cause actual events and results to differ materially from those contained in the forward-looking statements. In addition, there may be additional risks that neither Bridgetown 2 nor PropertyGuru presently know, or that Bridgetown 2 or PropertyGuru currently believe are immaterial, that could also cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements reflect Bridgetown 2’s and PropertyGuru’s expectations, plans, projections or forecasts of future events and view. If any of the risks materialize or Bridgetown 2’s or PropertyGuru’s assumptions prove incorrect, actual results could differ materially from the results implied by these forward-looking statements.

Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made. Bridgetown 2 and PropertyGuru anticipate that subsequent events and developments may cause their assessments to change. However, while PubCo, Bridgetown 2 and PropertyGuru may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, PubCo, Bridgetown 2 and PropertyGuru specifically disclaim any obligation to do so, except as required by law. The inclusion of any statement in this document does not constitute an admission by PropertyGuru nor Bridgetown 2 or any other person that the events or circumstances described in such statement are material. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing Bridgetown 2’s or PropertyGuru’s assessments as of any date subsequent to the date of this document. Accordingly, undue reliance should not be placed upon the forward-looking statements. In addition, the analyses of PropertyGuru and Bridgetown 2 contained herein are not, and do not purport to be, appraisals of the securities, assets or business of PropertyGuru, Bridgetown 2 or any other entity.

Industry and Market Data

This document contains information, estimates and other statistical data derived from third party sources and/or industry or general publications. Such information involves a number of assumptions and limitations, and you are cautioned not to place undue weight on such estimates. PropertyGuru, PubCo and Bridgetown 2 have not independently verified such third-party information, and make no representation as to the accuracy of such third-party information.

____________________

1 In terms of Engagement Market Share based on SimilarWeb data.

2 According to the Singapore Business Review, ASEAN to become world’s fourth largest economy for 2030: Singapore PM Lee, August 2018

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Fraud Is Flourishing on Zelle. The Banks Say It’s Not Their Problem.

Another Wells Fargo customer, Julia Gibson, lost $2,500 to a similar scam in October. After she reported the fraud to the bank, it gave her a provisional credit for the lost cash. But in January, the bank abruptly rescinded the credit, sending her balance to zero and incurring overdraft fees. The bank had decided the loss wasn’t fraudulent.

“What was so frustrating about this whole thing was that the customer service rep I talked to told me so many people had been experiencing this,” Ms. Gibson said.

In their appeals to Wells Fargo, Mr. Faunce and Ms. Gibson cited the consumer bureau’s rules about fraudulent losses, but the bank repeatedly rebuffed them.

“There are certain indicators that we look for in the investigation to let us know that there has indeed been fraud on the account,” Wells Fargo wrote to Mr. Faunce on Feb. 23. “During the investigation, we were not able to find any of those indicators present and denied the claim.”

After The Times contacted the bank, it refunded Ms. Gibson.

“We are committed to following all regulations governing transactions,” said Jim Seitz, a bank spokesman. “We are actively working to raise awareness of common scams to help prevent these heartbreaking incidents.” He declined to discuss specific customer cases.

Other victims of fraud trying to recoup their money from banks have had better luck when citing the law.

Ken Page-Romer, a psychotherapist and author who lives in Long Beach, N.Y., had $19,500 taken from his account in November after he received spoofed text alerts and calls that appeared to come from Citigroup phone numbers. The bank initially denied his claims. At the urging of his husband, Gregory, a financial adviser, Mr. Page-Romer wrote the bank a letter citing Regulation E, and sent copies to the police and banking regulators. Citi soon returned his stolen money.

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