• U.S. retail banking giant makes first overseas foray
  • UK seen as testing ground for global expansion -CEO
  • Bank will face thin margins, tough competition

LONDON, Sept 21 (Reuters) – JPMorgan (JPM.N) is challenging British rivals on their home turf with the launch on Tuesday of its long-awaited digital retail bank, Chase, as part of what the U.S. lender hopes will be a global expansion.

The launch marks the first foray into retail banking outside North America by one of the United States’ most dominant lenders, heaping pressure on British incumbents such as Lloyds (LLOY.L), Barclays (BARC.L), NatWest (NWG.L) and HSBC (HSBA.L) which are already battling low interest rates and upstart digital rivals.

“We have been watching in which markets customers are really ready to do their banking primarily through digital channels, and the UK frankly leads the way in this respect” said Sanoke Viswanathan, chief executive of the new Chase bank…

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