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The World’s Top 20 Banks

The World’s Top 20 Banks

July saw the release of 2014’s Top 1000 World Banks ranking, compiled and published by The Banker magazine, the financial affairs publication owned by The Financial Times.

Providing in-depth data and analysis of the international banking industry’s performance, the ranking is a highly demanded annual feature.   

“Last year, for the first time, a Chinese bank topped the Top 1000. This year, Chinese banks have further increased their strangle-hold on the ranking, and they now hold the top two places,” comments Brian Caplen, Editor of The Banker

Indeed, the comprehensive list of the world’s top 1000 banks indicates that Chinese banks collectively accumulated the highest amount of profits by any country during the past financial year, whilst the four largest Chinese banks are also the world’s four most profitable banks.

“This,” Caplen stresses, “is quite a record.” 

Other notable trends in the Top 1000 this year include record-breaking profits, of some 920 billion dollars, up 23% on last year, driven largely by the profits of Chinese and American banks.


In the eurozone, there appears to have been a recovery in some countries – such as Spain and Greece – whilst problems continue in others – such as Italy.

In the emerging markets, meanwhile, the index presents a mixed picture, with some banks suffering in the ranking as their national currencies fell against the dollar while others – such as Kenya – perform well.

“Looking at this year’s top ten, ranked by Tier 1 Capital, you’ll see that industrial and commercial bank of China remains top and is joined by China Construction Bank in number two, up from number five last year.  

“Bank of China is the seventh, while agricultural Bank of china has moved up one place, from tenth to ninth. 

“So apart from ICBC, which was already number 1 and so could not move any higher, the other three Chinese state-owned banks have all moved up the ranks.

“By contrast, JP Morgan, Bank of America and HSBC all moved down a place to three, four and five, respectively,” Caplen concludes.

Below, Gold News presents the first 20 banks on the list, featured in order of Tier 1 Capital in USD$ million.


Note: The information in this listing was correct at the time of publication in The Banker magazine, July 2014