Banking & Finance

The World's Largest Banks

Of the world’s 10 largest banks, the top four are based in China. The United States and France have two each, and the United Kingdom and Japan each put one on list. The top five banks based on total assets are all based in Asia.

The largest U.S. bank is JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) with assets as of the end of December 2015 of $2.35 trillion. The bank ranks seventh in the world, a drop of one position compared with its ranking at the end of March 2015.

Bank of America Corp. (NYSE: BAC) is the world’s ninth largest bank, and the only other U.S. financial institution to make the top 10. The bank’s assets totaled $2.14 trillion at the end of December, and its position in the ranking is unchanged from March 2015.

The data were published on Tuesday by S&P Global Market Intelligence. Here are the top 10 and their total assets converted to dollars at the exchange rate as of the end of December.

  1. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China: $3.42 trillion
  2. China Construction Bank: $2.83 trillion
  3. Agricultural Bank of China: $2.74 trillion
  4. Bank of China: $2.59 trillion
  5. Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (NYSE: MTU): $2.46 trillion
  6. HSBC Holdings PLC (NYSE: HSBC): $2.41 trillion
  7. JPMorgan: $2.35 trillion
  8. BNP Paribas: $2.17 trillion
  9. Bank of America: $2.14 trillion
  10. Credit Agricole: $1.85 trillion

Bank of China rose from fifth to fourth in the latest ranking, while Mitsubishi rose from eighth to fifth and Credit Agricole jumped from 12th to 10th. HSBC dropped from fourth to sixth, JPMorgan fell from sixth to seventh and BNP fell from seventh to eighth.

S&P noted that if JPMorgan followed the same accounting principles as the Chinese banks, the U.S. bank would rank second. Under U.S. GAAP accounting, banks report the net amount of derivative assets on their balance sheets, while companies (like the China-based banks) that use IFRS accounting rules must report the gross amount of derivative assets. If JPMorgan filed under IFRS, S&P estimated it would add assets of $902.20 billion, bringing its total assets to $3.254 trillion and making it the second-largest bank in the world.

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