UPDATE 1-Top China listed lender Merchants Bank's Q2 up 23 pct


(Adds details) SHANGHAI, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Merchants Bank Co. Ltd. posted its eighth-straight quarter of double digit growth on Thursday, beating expectations as China's largest domestically listed lender grappled with nationwide lending curbs and a swelling pool of sour debt. Beijing's clampdown on credit, which curtailed investment and lending to overheated sectors from steel to automobiles, could erode banks' bottom lines in 2005, though analysts say Merchants Bank should fare better ...

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