Secondary trading in bank loans went on-line in Hong Kong yesterday, with the launch of Asia's first Internet-driven loan-trading marketplace. The brainchild of a former group of Asian-based bankers, debtdomain.com was launched in Singapore on Wednesday, and in Hong Kong yesterday. The Web-based trading post now has its sights set on capturing the lion's share of the secondary trade in bank loans, which is at present conducted mainly on a bilateral basis over the telephone or by fax, explained executive director Chris Chan. Typically a bank may wish to find a buyer for a loan in order to balance a portfolio, sell-down an exposure to a particular client, or actively manage its portfolio of loans, Mr Chan said. The practice was less prevalent than in the United States or Europe, and anecdotal evidence was that only some 1 or 2 per cent of loans were traded in this way. Since about US$2 trillion worth of loans are outstanding in Asia at present, this suggests volumes of about US$30 billion, and with debtdomain aiming to charge between 0.25 of one basis point and 12 basis points per successful transaction, that projects potential gross fee incomes of about US$195 million will be generated.