Standard Bank still holds firm as the biggest bank in the country by assets, according to the S&P Global Market Intelligence rankings for 2018.

With assets exceeding R2 trillion, the bank is some way ahead of its closest competitor in the rankings, FirstRand, at R1.45 trillion.

According to S&P Global, the global rankings show that Chinese banks continued to expand in 2017, accounting for a fifth (18 banks) of the world’s largest banks, collectively reporting $23.761 trillion in assets at the end of 2017.

China’s ‘Big Four’ banks – Industrial & Commercial Bank of China, China Construction Bank, Agricultural Bank of China and Bank of China – remained as the top four banks by assets year-over-year, posting a combined $13.637 trillion in assets, up $1.727 trillion since last year’s ranking.

Half of this growth was due to a strengthening yuan against the US dollar, the group said.

While the US had the next highest number (11 banks) holding $12.196 trillion in assets, big player Wells Fargo was pushed out of a top 10 spot by France’s Crédit Agricole Group, while other US-based banks also suffered ranking drops.

Goldman Sachs Group fell three spots last year to 35, Morgan Stanley dropped one spot to 38, and State Street Corp fell 10 spots to 100.

In South Africa, Standard Bank Group remained the Middle East and Africa region’s third-largest bank by assets. The four other South African lenders in the ranking — FirstRand, Barclays Africa Group, Nedbank Group and Investec all moved up.

The table below outlines the biggest banks in South Africa by asset value.

# Bank Assets ($bn) Assets (Rbn)
1 Standard Bank Group 163.9 2 335.7
2 FirstRand 116.5 1 447.3
3 Absa 94.2 1 170.5
4 Nedbank 79.5 987.1
5 Investec 44.4 551.8

To determine the latest ranking, S&P said that a company’s total assets were adjusted for pending mergers, acquisitions and divestitures, as well as M&A deals that closed after the end of the reporting period through 31 March 2018, on a best-efforts basis.

Assets reported by non-US dollar filers were converted to dollars using period-end exchange rates. Total assets were taken on an “as-reported” basis and no adjustments are made to account for differing accounting standards.

The majority of banks in the rankings were ranked by total assets as of 31 December 2017, S&P said.

These are the 10 biggest banks in the world in 2018

# Bank Country Assets ($bn)
1 Industrial and Commercial Bank of China China 4 009.3
2 China Construction Bank China 3 400.3
3 Agricultural Bank of China China 3 235.7
4 Bank of China China 2 991.9
5 Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Japan 2 787.7
6 JPMorgan Chase & Co. US 2 533.6
7 HSBC Holdings UK 2 521.8
8 BNP Paribas SA France 2 357.1
9 Bank of America US 2 281.2
10 Credit Agricole Group France 2 117.2

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