The Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd (ICBC) is now the world’s most valuable bank, overtaking US bank Wells Fargo & Co, after it posted market capitalization of USD315 billion on 23 April.
A report by Bloomberg said ICBC’s market capitalization was 11 percent more than Wells Fargo. That means the gap between the two banks has widened since ICBC took over the lead on 7 April.
ICBC is the first Chinese bank to be named the largest bank in the world by assets.
ICBC posted a net profit growth of 5.1 percent to Rmb276.29 billion (USD45.29 billion) in 2014, while its total assets hit Rmb20.61 trillion (USD3.32 trillion), up 8.9 percent year-on-year.
Analysts said the Chinese government’s monetary easing supported Chinese banks’ gains by lowering funding costs and limiting bad loans.
Founded as a limited company on 1 January 1984, ICBC is one of China’s ‘Big Four’ state-owned commercial banks (the other three being the Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China, and China Construction Bank).
Early this week, ICBC launched a yuan clearing bank in Thailand, seeking to ease trade and investemnt with Thailand the Southeast Asia.
ICBC (Thai) was appointed in January as the yuan clearing bank in Thailand, where it has been in business for five years.
In a statement, ICBC Thai Chairman Ye Hu said the move will enhance the internationalisation of the RMB , especially the utilisation of RMB in the cross-border transactions in Thailand and Southeast Asian countries. – BusinessNewsAsia.com